Battles were reported in several parts of Mogadishu as has so often been the case the largest number of deaths were civilians in the capital city’s main Bakara Market.
Somali government and AU troops shelled the marketplace today, which lies outside their immediate control, and left at least 25 civilians dead and another 45 in the hospital treated for injuries.
AU troops have shelled the Bakara market repeatedly over the past several months, killing dozens of civilians in each strike. They have insisted in the past that these attacks are legitimate because the market is under insurgent control.
But virtually the whole nation of Somalia is under insurgent control. In fact, the self-declared “government” controls only a few city blocks around the presidential palace in Mogadishu, and despite repeated calls for US military support it seems unlikely that the AU-backed force will claim more of the city any time soon. What this ultimately means for locals is that they will remain in the government’s crosshairs for the forseeable future.