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Somali Militants: International Forces Strike "Safe House"

The Somali Islamist militant group al-Shabab says foreign forces have staged a pre-dawn raid on one of the group's "safe houses," in an apparent attempt to kill an al-Qaida militant.

In a recorded statement, an al-Shabab spokesman confirmed the incident, saying some of the group's fighters were in the house at the time. He said one militant was killed in the attack.

Witnesses told VOA foreign forces attacked a militant safe house early Saturday in the al-Shabab-controlled town of Barawe, south of the capital, Mogadishu.

Sources told VOA a top al-Qaida militant working with al-Shabab was the target of the attack.

No international forces in the region have confirmed involvement in the operation, which comes two weeks after a terrorist raid on a shopping mall in Kenya left 72 people dead, including five attackers.

Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for that attack.



Al-Shabab, an al-Qaida-linked group, has vowed to carry out other acts of violence against Kenya.

The rebel group is demanding that Kenyan forces withdraw from Somalia.

Kenyan forces entered Somalia two years ago to help battle the militant group, which has been fighting to turn Somalia into a strict Islamic state.

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