Five al-Shabab militants killed in southern Somalia

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MOGADISHU, May 22 (Xinhua) -- Somali National Army (SNA) on Thursday night killed 5 al-Shabab militants in a fierce clash in Burdhubo town in the southern region of Gedo, an official confirmed on Friday.

Nur Kadiye Ibrahim, SNA commander in Burdhubo told journalists that al-Shabab militants launched an attack on an army base in the town, but the forces repulsed them.

"Our forces are always on alert for any attempt from the militants, so they foiled their attack, we killed five of them during an intense confrontation between the army and the attackers," Kadiye said, adding that the army is now making operations in the town pursuing the remnants of the attackers.

Locals told Xinhua there was a fierce fight on Thursday night between the SNA and the insurgents who have increased attacks in a bid to topple the internationally-backed government.

"We panicked all last night after al-Shabab militants attacked the town targeting a base used by the army, we have no further details as it happened in the night," said Isse Hassan, a resident.

Somali army backed by African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) forced al-Shabab militants out of the capital Mogadishu in August 2011, but the militants still hold swaths of rural areas in central and southern regions conducting ambushes and planting landmines. Enditem

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