GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: At least ten people were injured Sunday following a clash between government forces and opposition allied militias in Mogadishu as Mohamed Fdarmaajo’s continued stay in power turns ugly by the day.
Goobjoog News correspondents in several parts of the city counted at least ten cases of people hit by bullets amid fears of deaths in some instances. Gunfire rocked the city for a better part of the evening after the break of the Ramadan fast. Government and opposition allied forces exchanged heavy gunfire around KM-4 junction and Maka al Mukarama streets.
Despite the calm by Monday morning, tension remained as residents are caught between two rival factions in what is reminiscent of the warlord’s era in Mogadishu. Daynile district commissioner Mohamed Jafar who defected to the opposition side led his forces around Daynile and parts of Hodan district where former Prime Minister Hassan Khaire has his base.
Forces loyal to former presidents Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, most of whom are Somali National Army soldiers who deserted the army from the Middle Shabelle region held control of northern Mogadishu districts including Kaaran, Abdiaziz and Yaqshid districts.
Other opposition factions mounted roadblocks along Abdiqasim road in Hodan district. Prime Minister Mohamed Roble called for order Sunday night urging government forces to uphold the law. This followed accusations by former president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Wadajir party leader Abdirahman Abdishakur of government attacks on their residences.
“It’s unfortunate that troops taking orders from [Farmajo] have attacked my residence,” Mohamud wrote on his Twitter account.
“I have warned him [Farmajo] previously and I repeat the risk of politicizing security. The responsibility of the consequence will be taken by Farmajo.”
The UN expressed concern about escalating violence and called for restraint and dialogue.
“The UN in Somalia is deeply concerned about clashes occurring in Mogadishu. We urge calm and maximum restraint by all parties. Violence is not the solution to the current #political stalemate. We urgently call on all parties to resume immediate dialogue.
Meanwhile, most universities announced the closure of their campuses Sunday until further notice following the outbreak of violence.
Sources who spoke to Goobjoog News in anonymity however said the closures were a protest against the extension of Farmaajo’s term.
Most streets in Mogadishu remain deserted today.