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Islamist Fighters Seize Central Somali Town


Witnesses say Islamist fighters have taken over a town in central Somalia after a brief battle with government troops.

Residents of Bulo-Burde, a town in Somalia's Hiran region, say the heavily armed fighters entered the town on Saturday and attacked government forces.

They say the government troops withdrew and that the offices of the local authorites were looted, although it was not clear who did the looting. Reuters news agency quotes a Hiran region official, Yusuf Ahmed Hagar, as saying the government will re-take the town.

Hard-line Islamists seized control of much of central and southern Somalia last year before being ousted by government soldiers and allied Ethiopian troops.

In Mogadishu, an Islamist-led insurgency that erupted in January continued Sunday as government troops clashed with insurgents at the Bakara market.

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

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