BREAKING: Al-Shabaab terrorists attacked and briefly captured the Darul Nim’a village in Middle Shabelle, forcing the Ma’awisley militias and the Somali National Army (SNA) to withdraw. After the short takeover, the government received reinforcements from additional units and managed to recapture the strategic town.
Darul Nim’a, Ruun-Nirgood district, Middle Shabelle, HirShabelle, SOMALIA. By Dalmar:
After a brief retreat from the village, the reinforced government forces compelled the militants to withdraw. The short incursion occurred when the Ma’awisley fighters reportedly left the town to get khat, providing al-Shabaab with an opportunity to attack them.
However, Darul Nim’a is now back under the control of the SNA troops, specifically the Ilaalo Qaran soldiers who received training in Eritrea.
The Somali Digest talked to one of the SNA soldiers in the area. He confirmed to us, under the condition of anonymity, the course of events described above. Moreover, although the government forces managed to recapture the town, al-Shabaab reportedly inflicted severe casualties on them, especially on the Ma’awisley.
The SNA and Ma’awisley reclaimed the Ruun-Nirgood district from al-Shabaab on 12 August. It was a crucial step in the ongoing anti-al-Shabaab campaign that has been gripping Somalia. At that time, experts pointed out that the government forces needed to focus on holding and governing the captured area since it was clear that al-Shabaab would try to retake it. Ruun-Nirgood is one of many places in Somalia that has become infamous for oscillating frontlines and frequent changes in governance.
A recurring pattern has emerged throughout the ongoing operation to weaken al-Shabaab’s hold on the region. In collaboration with the Ma’awisley militias, the government forces managed to liberate Ruun-Nirgood on 22 December 2022. However, their ability to maintain a grip did not last for long. Al-Shabaab attacked the government forces’ base in the area on 25 March, claiming to kill 51 soldiers, destroying eight vehicles, and seizing weapons and military equipment.
Darul Nim’a mosque destroyed
In late June, al-Shabaab also managed a swift takeover of the Darul Nim’a village. During the night, the militants advanced unopposed into the town. Ma’awisley forces, the incumbent custodians, and local inhabitants vacated, abandoning the village to the insurgents. Eyewitnesses in the area confirmed the destruction al-Shabaab left behind. The militants set houses ablaze, ruined a vital water well and demolished the single village mosque’s steps.