Somali army brigade rescues 33 children from Al-Shabaab camp

An officer from the Somali National Army’s elite commandos’ brigade gives biscuits to children rescued from an Al-Shabaab camp in Kurtunwarey district on August 14, 2020. 

Photo credit: Somali government media

What you need to know:

  • The operation took place Friday at Kurtunwarey district, 200km south of Mogadishu in the Lower Shabelle region. 
  • It involved an elite commandos’ brigade locally known as Danab (Lightning), which seized the town with little resistance as the militants reportedly retreated.

Mogadishu,

A brigade from the Somali National Army (SNA) has rescued 33 children from an Al-Shabaab camp in the latest blow to the militant group in the recruitment of minors as fighters.

The operation took place Friday at Kurtunwarey district, 200km south of Mogadishu in the Lower Shabelle region.

It involved an elite commandos’ brigade locally known as Danab (Lightning), which seized the town with little resistance as the militants reportedly retreated.

The Somali government media circulated photos of the commandos entering the vastly agricultural district, including one of an army officer distributing biscuits to the rescued children.

The media said the children were taken from their families by Al-Shabaab jihadists and kept in a camp that would turn them into child soldiers.

“When the army took over the town, they went to the camp where the children were staying on the outskirts of the town,” the government media stated, adding that the forces were searching for arms and explosives the jihadists left behind.

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