JULY 4, 2010: Two More Soldiers Killed in Somalia

Two More Soldiers Killed in Somalia

SOURCE: The New Vision

By Mary Karugaba and agenciesTwo Ugandan soldiers working with the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia were killed and three others injured during recent clashes with Islamist insurgents in northern Mogadishu.

"We lost two soldiers and three others were injured during clashes with the violent elements in Mogadishu at the beginning of this month," Maj. Barigye Ba-Hoku, the mission spokesperson, was quoted in the media as saying yesterday.

"The soldiers made the ultimate sacrifice of their life for ensuring peace and stability in Somalia. We are very proud of them," he told a press conference in Mogadishu.

In a separate attack, 26 civilians were killed during Thursday's fighting and five others on Friday in sporadic fire exchanges.

Government troops backed by AU peacekeepers on Thursday launched an offensive to recapture positions taken by the hardline Islamist rebels in clashes earlier this week.

Both the government and the militants claimed victory and that there were casualties on both sides.

On Saturday, a precarious calm had returned to northern Mogadishu, with both sides still camped in their positions of the previous day.

The UPDF spokesman, Lt. Col. Felix Kulayigye, said he had information about the incident but declined to comment, saying "that is Barigye's work".

In May, a Ugandan soldier was killed by a roadside bomb blast while carrying out a daily patrol near the port.