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Tuesday, September 13 2011 , Your time is 15:58:00
MOGADISHU - The Associated Press
Al-Shabab’s military spokesman issues a statement in Mogadishu Oct.19.
Kenya on Oct. 23 said that France’s navy bombed a town in Somalia near a
stronghold of al-Shabab, the first confirmation that a Western military force is
involved in the latest push against the Islamist militia.
Thousands of people, meanwhile, fled a camp for the displaced near Somalia’s
capital on Oct. 23, fearing an imminent clash between African Union peacekeepers
and the al-Qaeda-linked militants who are trying to demonstrate their strength
amid an assault on two fronts. In the country’s south, others braced for fierce
battles as Kenyan soldiers closed in on a militant-held town in their weeklong
effort to defeat the al-Shabab group blamed for suicide bombings, kidnapping
foreigners and killing famine victims.
Kenyan forces last week moved into Somalia to fight al-Shabab, and Oct. 23
confirmation emerged that the East African country is receiving help in the
fight from a Western power. Kenyan military spokesman Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir
said the French navy bombed the town of Kuday near the southern al-Shabab
stronghold of Kismayo on Oct. 22 night. A Nairobi-based diplomat told last week
that France was carrying out military attacks in Somalia; French officials in
Paris denied French forces were carrying out any attacks.The Kenyan military
sent troops into neighboring Somalia one week ago to pursue the militants
following a string of kidnappings on Kenyan soil that were blamed on Somali