Uganda denies claims UPDF killed 189 militants in Somalia attack
KAMPALA, Uganda – The Ugandan government has denied allegations that the Ugandan People’s Defense Force [UPDF] On Friday, killed at least 189 Al-Shabaab militants in Lower Shebelle, calling media reports “fake news,” just over five days after they aired.
Through its mission in New York, Kampala has denied the allegations, despite the news having been received positively across the region, which is battling violent extremism, which has seen more than 5,000 people, mostly security guards, lose their lives.
While responding to Rashid Abdi, a commentator on Horn of Africa affairs, Adonia Ayebare, who is Uganda’s permanent representative to the United Nations, called the media reports false, adding that the public should ignore them.
“Brother Rashid. I have told the leaders of the UPDF that this claim is fake news and was not official claim and we should treat it as such. Thank you for recognizing the high sacrifices of the UPDF and the ‘Uganda for the cause of AMISOM,’ he said. .
A statement quoted by Reuters said the Ugandan People’s Defense Force [UPDF] claimed on Friday that his soldiers attacked al Shabaab hideouts in the villages of Sigaale, Adimole and Kayitoy, just over 100 km away [62 miles] southwest of the capital Mogadishu.
“[The raid]… Saw the forces decommission 189 fighters linked to Al Qaeda and destroy a number of military equipment and items used in terrorist attacks, ”the UPDF said.
Currently, Uganda has nearly 4,500 soldiers serving in AMISOM and the troops have been helping stabilize the country since 2008. Various contingents who have served in the country have successfully liberated several towns, including Janaale who was captured in March 2020. .
In 2015, the UPDF was attacked when Al-Shabaab militants stormed an AMISOM base in Janale when one of its fighters crashed into a vehicle full of explosives in the perimeter of the base. , then a team of heavily armed combatants entered the breach and attacked the troops inside.
The attack was launched to commemorate an anniversary after the death of former group leader Ahmed Abdi Godane, who was killed in a US drone airstrike the year before. The UPDF, however, remained a major player in the country’s quest for peace.