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Rival Factions Resume Fighting in Push for Somali Capital


Islamic and secular militias have resumed fighting for control of Somalia's capital, killing at least seven people and wounding at least 11.

The fighting Wednesday broke a three-day lull in Mogadishu.

Witnesses say the Islamic militias carried out a well-planned attack and seized control of several areas in a northeastern Mogadishu neighborhood.

Islamic fighters have made steady progress in their battle against an alliance of secular warlords, known as the Alliance for the Restoration of Peace and Counter-Terrorism.

More than 300 people have been killed in fighting between the sides since February.

Somalia has had no effective central government since warlords overthrew dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991.

Islamist leaders reject Somalia's weak transitional government, because it is not based on Islam. They accuse the rival secular coalition of receiving U.S. support, a charge the U.S. has refused to confirm or deny.

The coalition, in turn, accuses the Islamic court leaders of having ties to al-Qaida.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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