Somalia: Al Shabaab rebels surrender to AU troops

Al Shabaab rebels have given in to AU troops after a key rebel town was captured(REUTERS)

September 24, 2012 (SABC News) – Two hundred Al Shabaab rebels surrendered after African Union (AU) troops and Somalian forces captured a key rebel town.

This has dealt a huge blow to the al Qaeda linked group, itself embroiled in violent rivalry.

Amisom, the AU Peace keeping Mission in Somalia, paraded those who surrendered and called on others to lay down their weapons.

“Two hundred and fifty are already here and have joined us. Eighty guns and others are still coming because we are still coming because we are still coordinating them,” says Colonel and Commander at Amisom, Stephen Mugerwa.

The African Union (AU) expects more militants to give themselves up. Some have already turned against their group.

The Ahmad Ali Militant Group says they have decided to surrender to the National Government and Amisom troops.

They say they want to work together with the Government’s soldiers.

Al -Shabab wants to oust Somalia’s President, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, whom they accuse of serving Western interests.

In Ethiopia, the Presidents of Sudan and South Sudan are still locked in peace talks.

President Omar al-Bashir and President Salva Kiir, are being pressured to resolve border disputes and end fighting in the region.

“Most of the economic issues agreed about and there are some difficulties here and there but the remaining hiccup now is regarding security issues,” says Sudan Spokesperson, Bader-El Din Abdullah.

Chief mediator, former President, Thabo Mbeki, says there appears to be genuine move towards finding a broad solution.

It comes after the UN threatened Security Council sanctions.

–SABC News