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Ethiopia prepares "massive offensive" on al-Shabab in Somalia



Ethiopian Soldiers in Somalia File Photo

By ELIAS MESERET

ADDIS ABEBA, Ethiopia (AP) – The Ethiopian National Defense Force confirmed an al-Shabab extremist ambush on an Ethiopian peace convoy in neighboring Somalia on Saturday and said the Ethiopian forces are preparing a "massive offensive" in response.

The statement rejected an al-Shabab request that several Ethiopian troops would be killed.

The ambush was reported as al-Qaida-linked
al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the deadly assault of the hotel in Nairobi
and deadly attacks on forces within Somalia.

Ethiopia contributes with troops to a multinational African
Union peacekeeping mission. He also has troops in Somalia independently
under the command of the Ethiopian army.

The statement said the ambush occurred when the convoy was traveling Burhakaba to Baidoa, southwest of Somalia.

A separate statement of the strength of the UA said that the ambush
occurred on Friday and African Union troops responded to the fire, killing four extremists
and injuring many others.

Three soldiers with the strength of the AU were injured, according to the statement.

Al-Shabab, which was formed more than a decade ago a
response to the presence of Ethiopian forces within Somalia, among others
reasons, he never managed to orchestrate an important attack inside the
Ethiopian land of heart, even if it has carried out important attacks in Iraq
bordering Kenya.

At the end of October, al-Shabab declared that he had killed 30 Ethiopian people
troops in Somalia. Weeks before, the press organs of the Ethiopian state
reported that the Ethiopian Air Force killed 70 al-Shabab members later
the extremist group tried to attack Ethiopian forces.


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