From: Berhane Habtemariam (Berhane.Habtemariam@gmx.de)
Date: Wed Dec 10 2008 - 08:52:33 EST
UIC captures another town in Somalia
Wed, 10 Dec 2008 09:14:51 GMT
The capture adds to the growing hold of UIC on Somalia.
Al-Shabaab fighters affiliated to the Union of the Islamic Courts (UIC) have
captured Somalia's southwestern town of Bulo Hawa, near Kenya.
Hundreds of armed al-Shabaab fighters entered the Gedo regional town of Bulo
Hawa on Tuesday, taking control of police stations, military bases and
government buildings, a Press TV correspondent reported.
The capture of Bulo Hawa adds to the growing hold that al-Shabaab fighters
have gained across south and central Somalia in a two-year insurgency
against government and rebel forces.
UIC's advance in Somalia in recent weeks has raised the stakes in an
insurgency that is the latest manifestation of 17 years of civil conflict in
Somalia since warlords toppled dictator Siad Barre in 1991.
Meanwhile on the same day, the United Nations announced that it would host a
two-day international conference in Nairobi to discuss ways of combating
The summit would bring together some 140 officials from 40 countries on
Wednesday and Thursday, UN spokeswoman Michele Montas quoted UN special
representative for Somalia, Ahmed Ould-Abdallah, as saying.
"It is clear that the problem of piracy is linked to the need for peace and
stability in Somalia itself," Ould-Abdallah said.
He also added that he hopes the conference will lead to "greater
international attention and cooperation between countries and regional and
The conference coincides with the launch of the European Union's anti-piracy
drive called Atalanta, which seeks to protect merchant ships from pirate
attacks, off Somalia.
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