20 killed in Somalia clashes

Mogadishu, Dec 9 (IANS) At least 20 people were killed and 120 others injured in the clashes between rival security forces in central Somalia city of Galkayo, a UN agency said on Tuesday.

A statement from the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said more than 90,000 people were also displaced in the past two weeks in the battle between security forces in Galmudug and Puntland administrations, Xinhua reported.

“The armed violence has exacerbated an already fragile humanitarian situation in Galkayo and its surrounding areas particularly for the internally displaced people (IDP), who lived in quite destitute IDP settlements that had been impacted by the El Nino rains prior to the conflict breakout,”OCHA said.

“However, relative calm has returned to Galkayo after the signing of the cease-fire agreement. Reports confirmed that the armed forces from both states have started to withdraw from the frontline,” the UN said.

It said some internally displaced people have reportedly begun to return to their homes and previous settlements, while many are still reluctant to return.

The two warring sides clashes more than two weeks ago in Galkayo city of Mudug region, which is controlled by the two administrations, Galmudug in southern parts and Puntland in northern parts.

A peace deal, which aims at ending the recent clashes between forces loyal to Puntland and Galmudug, was signed on December 2.

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