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At Least 11 Killed in Fighting Between Militants, Ethiopian Forces in Somalia


In Somalia, at least seven people were killed and dozens wounded when Somali and Ethiopian troops entered a section of the capital, Mogadishu. Meanwhile, in southern Somalia, people are suffering from a suspected cholera outbreak. Cathy Majtenyi reports for VOA from Nairobi.

Media reports indicate that angry residents and insurgents dragged the bodies of two soldiers through the streets and set them on fire.

They were protesting the presence of Ethiopian troops, which were brought into the country at the end of last year to drive out forces of the Islamic Courts Union.

The insurgents attacked the Ethiopian and Somali troops after they entered the neighborhood and the troops fired back, killing civilians in the process.

A reporter with the French news agency, Ali Musa, tells VOA local residents also got involved in the fighting as rumors about the troops spread.

"Others were being told that there was going to be an invasion to occupy that part of Mogadishu and the government will be making house searches," said Musa. "People have been informed in that way and a lot of people were coming to fight them [government troops] through different ways."

The capital is becoming increasingly violent, despite the presence of 1,500 Ugandan troops in Mogadishu as part of the A.U. peacekeeping force.

The transitional government, which was put together in Kenya more than two years ago following an internationally led peace process, recently moved its base from the town of Baidoa to Mogadishu.

Meanwhile, in southern Somalia, 22 people have reportedly died from a suspected cholera outbreak.

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