Inching Towards Conflict
The ICU and Ethiopian-backed TFG in Somalia don’t appear to be wasting any time. The Washington Post reports that the ICU has advanced to within 12 miles of the only town still controlled by the TFG. As a result, the forthcoming clash between the ICU and the Ethiopian-backed TFG seems to be one step closer.
The Islamic militia that has seized much of southern Somalia has advanced to within 12 miles of the only town still controlled by the country's weak U.N.-backed government, an Islamic official said Wednesday.
The militia reached Moode Moode on Tuesday night, said local militia leader Mohammed Ibrahim Bilal. The group has started 24-hour patrols in the area, he said.
"Our aim was to help the local residents in their fighting of bandits and to lift blockages from the road linking Baidoa to Mogadishu," Bilal told The Associated Press.Abdirahman Dinari, a spokesman for the transitional government, described the militia's advance as "a provocative action."
Adding to this, the ICU is claiming that Ethiopian troops are shelling the town of Beledweyne. The ICU took control of Beledweyne in early August and has used it as a base to launch further incursions in Somalia.