Al-Shabab militants operating in the central region of Somalia killed at least 19 civilians and destroyed trucks carrying food aid in an overnight attack.
According to reports from the ground, the terrorist group launched an attack on a group of trucks moving in the town of Hiran (located in the semi-autonomous state of Hirshabelle in central Somalia). The trucks were transporting food aid to a nearby city when they were ambushed.
Local clan elder Abdulahi Hared said, “The terrorists massacred innocent civilians who were traveling … last night. We don’t have the exact number of victims, but 19 dead bodies have been collected.”
Governor Ali Jeyte of the Hiram region said, “dead bodies are still being collected, including women and children. They could be more than 20 dead. The terrorists killed most of the people on board the vehicles.” She added that the critical food aid (that was being sent to the town of Mahas) is now delayed, adding that people in the community are worried they could run out of food.
Al-Shabab issued a rare statement following the attack claiming they targeted fighters from a local sub-clan that recently helped government forces. They say they killed 20 “militiamen and those who were transporting material for them.”