Military intelligence report from the Somali’s semi-autonomous region of Puntland indicate that security forces from Somali National army and Puntland defence forces besieged a group of about 250 Al-Shabaab militants in the Zuuj hills.
Heavy fighting has been reported throughout the week with more than 60 Islamist militants believed to be allied to the split faction of Al-Shabaab led by Sheikh Mumin.
Security forces have regained some territory in the ongoing counter-offensive operation against the militant group that began on Monday after the militant raided Garaad village in Puntland before retreating to the Zuujj hills.
According to Omar Abdullahi, a regional governor, Puntland and allied forces had killed dozens of militants on Thursday in a fierce clash in Baadqab some 90 kilometers (55 miles) southwest of Puntland’s capital Garowe.
The Islamist militants are fighting to topple the western backed government and impose strict Islamist Sharia law.
The militants who have suffered huge losses since the siege began on Monday has not commented on the number of casualties. The militant group usually gives lower number of casualties on its side and exaggerates much higher death tolls for security forces.
SNA and Puntland forces received extra military weaponry from the Federal government of Somalia in support of the ongoing offensives.