Somalia: Former Al-Shabaab Deputy Leader Mukhtar Roobow Surrenders to Somali Government

13 Août, 2017, 23:23 | Author: Claudine Rigal
  • In June the US cancelled a $5m reward offered for Robow's capture

Confirming the news, Minister of Internal Security Hassan Hussein Mohamed said: "Al-Shabaab militants wanted to kill Robow but we gave him military help and repulsed the Al-Shabaab fighters".

A former Somali insurgent leader, Mukhtar Robow Abu Mansur, has defected to the government, a military official said on Sunday, severing ties with the militant group Al Shabaab. "Hundreds of clan militias dug in trenches in the hills of Abal village and its surroundings to defend any attack from Al-Shabaab" Omar Abdi, a resident in the town of Hudur said.

Robow, who was the deputy director of al-Shabab, is the highest official to have ever quit the group.

Estimated to be in his 50s, Robow is one of al-Shabab's most experienced leaders, having travelled to Afghanistan and trained alongside al-Qaeda around 2000 after studies in Sudan.

Former Al-Shabaab deputy leader and spokesman Mukhtar Robow Ali surrendered to Somali authorities on Sunday, according to a state official. Al-Shabab still controls parts of rural Somalia.

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Before his disagreement with the group, Robow was declared wanted terrorist by the U.S. in June 2012 with a $5 million bounty placed on his head.

Al-Shabab a year ago was named the deadliest armed group in Africa, with more than 4,200 people killed in 2016, according to the Washington, DC-based Africa Center for Strategic Studies.

Al Shabaab has been fighting for years to try to topple Somalia's central government and rule the Horn of Africa country according to their own interpretation of Sharia law. Aweys also defected to the government because of the purge within al-Shabab.

The extremist group has vowed to step up attacks after the recently elected government of President Mohamed Abdullahi "Farmajo" Mohamed launched a new military offensive against it.

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