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Fighting Kills At Least 3 in Mogadishu

New fighting in Somalia's capital has killed at least three people and wounded at least 20 others.

A local journalist tells VOA's Somali service that government forces attacked Islamist insurgents in parts of Mogadishu early Thursday.

The fighting was centered in the Bakara market, a longtime insurgent stronghold, and the city's Howlwadaag District.

Government forces are reported to have captured an insurgent base in Howlwadaag.

The Somali government controls only small parts of Mogadishu after more than three years of fighting with Islamist militants.

The groups al-Shabab and Hizbul Islam are trying to topple the government and turn Somalia into a strict Islamic state.