ALERT LINE

Somalia: 12 killed as army repels attack on prison

Somalia’s government forces regained control of a high security prison in the capital that was attacked Sunday by seven heavily armed suspected Islamic militants who attempted to free other extremists held there, officials said.

All the attackers, three government soldiers and two civilians were killed, said Information Minister Mustafa Duhulow.

Duhulow denounced the extremists as “against the security improvements we are currently experiencing here in Mogadishu and all they want is for the world to believe that Mogadishu is not safe. However, loudly we say to them that these foiled attacks strengthen our forces and prove their bravery to the people of Somalia.”

Mogadishu’s Godka Jilacow prison, the scene of the Sunday morning attack, is a key interrogation center for Somalia’s intelligence agency and many suspected militants are believed to be held in underground cells there.

Somali police Capt. Mohamed Hussein said the attackers were “trying to free terrorists held in the prison.”

The Somali rebel group al-Shabab, which is linked to al-Qaida, claimed responsibility for the attack that shattered a period of calm in Mogadishu, which is stabilizing after nearly 20 years of chaotic violence.

Read More:News from The Associated Press.

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