Senior Al-Shabaab leader killed in S. Somalia



A senior Al-Shabaab leader was killed Friday night in a covert operation by Somali army in the southern region, officials said Saturday.

Aden Abdi Mohamed, Deputy Mayor of Hudur in Bakool region, told Xinhua Al-Shabaab leader Qasim Sheikh was killed after government troop cornered him.

“Our forces launched an operation after receiving intelligence that Sheikh was hiding in the Abal village, 18 kilometers out of Hudur. There was no resistance and Qasim was killed on the spot,” said Mohamed.

Mohamed said Qasim was once a government official in the region before joining the Al-Qaeda-linked group, and was leading operations for Al-Shabaab.

The death of Qasim is seen as a further blow to the militant group, which has lost a number of key leaders in Somali government attacks and U.S. airstrikes. The group’s leader Ahmed Abdi Godane was killed in September last year in a U.S airstrike.

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