Six al-Shabab militants killed during fight with Somalia troops

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MOGADISHU, March 10 (Xinhua) -- Somali security forces on Tuesday killed six al-Shabab militants after a fierce gun battle in Diff town in the Lower Juba region, an official said on Tuesday.

Ahmed Salad Ahmed, the governor of Diff told reporters that al-Shabab fighters launched an attack on a base used by the army but the troops fended off the attack and inflicted casualties on the militants.

"There was an intense battle between our army and the militants which lasted more than two hours but our soldiers overpowered them. We killed six of them and now they have been driven out of the town," Ahmed said.

He revealed that two soldiers were killed while one suffered injuries during the fight.

Eyewitnesses said al-Shabab militants attacked the town leading to a gunfight.

"We could hear the sound of heavy weapons exchanged by the two sides and the residents panicked but the situation returned to normal after the militants were chased," Rahma Bayle, a local resident told Xinhua by phone.

The Somali army last week killed five al-Shabab militants on the outskirt of Beled Weyne town in the country's central region of Hiiraan.

The southern parts of Somalia have been the epicenter of clashes between government forces and al-Shabab militants who were forced out of the capital Mogadishu in August 2011 by the Somali army and African Union Forces. Enditem

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