Mogadishu mayor calls for immediate probe into civilian killings by AU forces

Hiiraan Xog, Mogadishu Mayor Abdirahman Omar Osman has called on leaders of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) to launch an investigation into the deaths of four civilians killed by AU troops in Mogadishu.

AMISOM soldiers on Tuesday killed four civilians after a bomb blast targeted their military convoy in the north of Mogadishu.

In a meeting with AMISOM forces commander, Jim Besigye Oweyesigire, the mayor urged the Mission to bring those behind the killing of the innocent civilians.

“I had a discussion with AMISOM force commander on the killing of the civilians in Hilwa district. I informed him that it was unacceptable to harm civilians and I ask him immediate probe into the incident,” said the mayor.

Hours after the bomb blast targeted the convoy of the AU troops, AMISOM said in a tweet that its convoy had “encountered double IED explosions in the Soqola area” – part of Huriwa district. But it made no mention of the shooting, which witnesses said involved Burundian members of the force.

More than 100 demonstrators protested at Ex-Control Balad Junction, denouncing the killings and demanding justice from Somalia’s government and from AMISOM.

Al-Shabab militants claimed responsibility for the roadside bomb and said the blast killed AU soldiers. Witnesses said they did not see any soldiers killed.

AMISOM has more than 22,000 soldiers and police, from six African countries, deployed in Somalia to protect the government there and fight the militants.

AMISOM has previously been accused of killing civilians, including an incident in which armored vehicles ran over civilians’ cars.



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