Somali cabinet ministers escape ambush

Dec. 4, 2012 at 4:22 PM

MOGADISHU, Somalia, Dec. 4 (UPI) -- The Somali ministers of defense, interior and justice escaped without injury from an attack on their convoy, officials said.

The Islamist group al-Shabaab, which has ties to al-Qaida, said it carried out the ambush, which began when the convoy hit a landmine Monday and fighters attacked, the BBC reported. On its Twitter feed, al-Shabaab said several people were killed while officials said police escorts were seriously wounded.

There was also heavy fighting near Jowhar, 55 miles north of Mogadishu, the largest town under al-Shabaab control. The regional governor said al-Shabaab appears to be bringing fighters into the town to keep it from being recaptured by government forces.

The new fighting ended a period of relative calm, the BBC reported.

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