Officials in southwestern Somalia said two Kenyan soldiers and one Somali soldier were killed Friday when al-Shabab militants ambushed their convoy in the Gedo region.
Regional military officials said the ambush began with a massive roadside explosion which destroyed a Kenyan military vehicle, killing the two Kenyan soldiers and wounding others. Al-Shabab fighters then fired on the convoy and exchanged heavy gunfire with Kenyan and Somali National Army soldiers.
The Somali soldier died after being hit in the chest by shrapnel, officials said.
“The convoy was attacked after they detonated an explosion in a narrow road between hills,” said Colonel Warfa Sheikh Aden, military spokesman for Somali troops in the region.
Officials said at least three militants were killed in the fighting.
Aden said at least three other soldiers — all Kenyans, along with a civilian — were wounded.
Al-Shabab, for its part, said it killed 10 Kenyan soldiers and destroyed three military vehicles.
More gun battles were reported late Friday after al-Shabab launched a second ambush against a convoy of Somali troops who were dispatched to reinforce the convoy attacked earlier. It’s unclear if there were any additional casualties resulting from this fighting.
Kenyan troops are part of the African Union mission in Somalia. The AU mission, AMISOM, has been fighting al-Shabab since 2007.