MOGADISHU, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- Somali National Army (SNA) elite forces, Danab, killed 18 al-Shabab militants during an anti-terror operation conducted at a village in Hiran region of central Somalia on Wednesday, the military chief confirmed on Thursday.
Odowaa Yusuf Rageh, Chief of Defense Forces, said the military operation was conducted in Buq Aqable area, targeting one of the main bases for al-Shabab terrorists in Beledweyne.
"During the operation, the Danab forces destroyed al-Shabab's main base in Buq Aqable village which was being used to prepare explosive devices. Our forces also killed 18 militants," Yusuf told the Somali News Agency.
He said offices and other hideouts used by the terror group to stage attacks in Hiran region were destroyed.
The group which is fighting to topple the government has been facing enormous pressure and an offensive from government forces being backed by the local militia with an aim to flush out the group from the Hiran region.
The extremist group was driven out of Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, in 2011 but it is still capable of conducting attacks, targeting government installations, hotels, restaurants, and public places. ■