Turkish airstrike kills 20 civilians including children in Somalia’s Lower Shabelle region


MOGADISHU (KAAB TV) – At least 20 civilians, including women and children, were tragically killed in a Turkish drone strike on Baqdaad village in Somalia’s Lower Shabelle region on Monday night, according to distraught residents.

The strike, which occurred as the community was observing Taraweeh prayers, resulted in the destruction of a local mosque and residential homes, further compounding the devastation.

The Turkish drones were reportedly deployed in support of Somali army units Gorgor and NISA, which had been ambushed by Al-Shabaab militants earlier in the day near Jambaluul village, about 34 kilometer from Mogadishu.

While the intended target was the militants, the strike tragically hit the civilian-populated village of Baqdaad instead.

Speaking to the media at Mogadishu’s Madina hospital, where the bodies were transported, grieving family members recounted the horror of losing loved ones in the attack.

“Our people were hit by airstrike during the night. The people were performing the Taraweeh prayer when the drone hit the local mosque but survivors were also hit when they fled to the nearby houses,” one woman lamented, revealing the loss of two family members.

Another bereaved man expressed his anguish, stating, “It is tragedy. It is massacre against civilians, children and women. We demand justice.”

The bodies of the victims were held in the hospital mortuary as families gathered, united in their call for accountability.

In a distressing twist, Al-Shabaab militants released a statement containing the names of suspected civilians killed in the strike, including 11 children aged between 7 and 11, and eight women.

These innocent victims were residents of the agricultural village, caught in the crossfire of conflict.

While the Somali Ministry of Information initially stated that the airstrike targeted Al-Shabaab and claimed the lives of 30 terrorists, there was no mention of the civilian casualties acknowledged at the hospital.

Subsequent inquiries to the ministries of information and defense regarding the civilian deaths were met with silence.

Attempts to seek clarification from the Turkish Embassy in Mogadishu regarding the civilian casualties went unanswered.

Turkish drones have been actively engaged in airstrikes in Lower Shabelle and Middle Shabelle regions as part of the Somali government’s campaign against Al-Shabaab, backing the Gorgor unit, a commando force trained and supported by Turkey.

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Baraheenna Bulshada


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