Breaking News: Convicted Boston Marathon bomber Tsarnaev will seek a new trial

Official: 3,000 extremists killed by Kenya

Oct. 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Kenyan military forces have killed more than 3,000 al-Shabaab fighters since entering Somalia a year ago, the Somali defense minister says.

Defense Minister Yusuf Haji revealed the casualty figures Wednesday during a ceremony in Nairobi leading up to the first anniversary on Sunday of Kenyan troops entering Somalia, the Nairobi newspaper The Star reported.

During that same period, Haji said, Kenyan forces lost 22 soldiers and officers and a helicopter.

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki, speaking in Kampala, Uganda, where he was holding talks with Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, called for insurgents who had surrendered to forces of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) to be demobilized, disarmed and reintegrated into Somali society.

Adding that Kenya had no intention to be an occupying force in Somalia, Kibaki called for an extension of the AMISOM mandate that expires at the end of the month.

More than 77,200 square miles of Somalia have been liberated from al-Shabaab, said Gen. Julius Karangi, Kenya's chief of general staff.

Haji cautioned that although al-Shabaab is no longer in control of southern Somali, it has not stopped being a threat. The extremist group will probably return to being a local insurgency, he said, and AMISOM would have to adapt its tactics to respond to the change.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Related UPI Stories
Topics: Mwai Kibaki
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
Kim Jong Un had terrapin farm manager executed, says source
Burt's Bees co-founder Burt Shavitz dies at 80
Encroaching sea levels endanger Pakistan's Indus Delta
North Korea requests medical aid from U.N. agencies
More than 80 percent of North Korean defectors are women, says report