Somalia’s Al-Shabab storm military base in country’s south, kill 27 soldiers

People look at damaged shops after two car bombs were detonated and three Shabab gunmen were shot dead after exchanging fire with security forces outside the presidential palace in Mogadishu, on July 14, 2018. (File Photo: AFP/Mohamed Abdiwahab)
Updated 23 July 2018
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Somalia’s Al-Shabab storm military base in country’s south, kill 27 soldiers

  • The base is some 50 km (31 miles) away from the port city of Kismayu
  • Al Shabab attacked the same base in June, wounding seven soldiers

MOGADISHU: Somalia’s Al-Shabab group said on Monday its fighters had attacked a military base in the south of the country, killing 27 soldiers.
“We first attacked the base with a suicide car bomb and then stormed. We killed 27 soldiers and took the base. Some soldiers fled into the jungles,” Abdiasis Abu Musab, Al-Shabab’s military operation spokesman said.
The base is some 50 km (31 miles) away from the port city of Kismayu. There was no immediate comment from government official on the attack.
Al Shabab fights to topple Somalia’s central government and impose its a rule based on its own strict interpretation of Islam’s Sharia law.
Al Shabab attacked the same base in June, wounding seven soldiers.


NATO, EU, US hail Macedonia vote as key step on Western path

Updated 20 October 2018
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NATO, EU, US hail Macedonia vote as key step on Western path

BRUSSELS: NATO, the European Union and the US on Saturday hailed a Macedonian parliament vote as another step toward ending a decades-long name row with Greece that takes the small country closer to joining their Western clubs.
NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg and EU diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini welcomed the close vote late Friday to start the process of renaming the country North Macedonia — a move that EU and NATO member Greece also hailed.
“It’s up to the government & political leaders to complete national procedures on the name agreement & seize this historic opportunity to bring the country into #NATO,” Stoltenberg tweeted after the vote.
“We now expect the national procedures for the implementation of the agreement to continue without any delays, toward the adoption of the constitutional changes,” Mogherini and fellow EU official Johannes Hahn said in a statement.
In Washington, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert welcomed the decision by Macedonia’s parliament “to initiate the constitutional changes needed to implement” the agreement with Greece.
She called it an “historic opportunity to advance stability, security and prosperity throughout the region.”
Amendments will now be drafted in the capital Skopje to incorporate the new name into the constitution, after which another parliamentary vote will be required to enshrine the changes.
Under the accord, which Prime Minister Zoran Zaev struck with his Greek counterpart Alexis Tsipras in June, the Balkan state would rename itself North Macedonia. In exchange, Athens has promised to stop blocking its entry into NATO and the EU.
Greece has stood in Macedonia’s way for 27 years in protest at the country’s name, which it argues is an encroachment on its own province called Macedonia.
Mogherini and Hahn, the European commissioner who oversees talks to bring new members into the 28-nation bloc, said the vote underscored the determination and courage of both sides to resolve their long dispute.
“This is a truly unique opportunity for decisively moving the country forward on its European Union path as well as for reconciliation in the region,” Mogherini and Hahn said.
“The European Union will continue to fully support and accompany the country, all its citizens and its institutions.”