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Saturday, March 3, 2018

3 Burundian peacekeepers killed in Al-Shabaab ambush in Somalia

BUJUMBURA, March 3 (Xinhua) -- At least three Burundian soldiers of the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) were killed in an Al-Shabaab attack near Jowhar, the Burundian army spokesman Floribert Biyereke said Friday evening.


The insurgent ambush on a Burundian convoy happened around 10:30 a.m. local time (0830 GMT) when Al-Shabaab militants exploded a bomb and then opened fire, said Biyereke, adding that the Burundian troops fought back.

Three soldiers were killed, seven were injured and four others were still missing, and one armored vehicle and four trucks were damaged during the conflict, he said.

The attack happened as representatives from the contributing countries to AMISOM were meeting in the Ugandan capital Kampala.

Countries contributing troops to fight militants in Somalia include Burundi, Uganda, Kenya, Djibouti and Ethiopia. They have agreed not to pull out of the Horn of Africa as this would "lead to a reversal of the gains made by African Mission in Somalia (AMISOM)," said a communique released on Friday evening.

The communique said that the Somalia National Army is not yet strong enough to take care of security concerns there, and also made a reference to the United Nations Security Council Resolution of August 2017, which aimed at a gradual reduction and withdrawal of AMISOM troops by 2020.