The Ethiopian army on Wednesday “thwarted” an attack by Somali Islamist Shebab fighters against a border town between the two countries, the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry said.
“Ethiopia today successfully thwarted an attempted attack by the terrorist group al-Shabaab against the locality of Dolo, on the Ethiopia-Somalia border”, briefly indicates the ministry on Twitter.
The Ethiopian federal army “neutralized suicide bombers and destroyed weapons used by the shebab”, continues the ministry without giving an assessment, ensuring that “the attackers were stopped dead before they could do great damage”.
The Ethiopian government does not specify which target was targeted or on which side of the border the attackers were neutralized. Dolo in Ethiopia is separated by less than three kilometers from its Somali twin Doolow.
The Shebab Islamists, affiliated with Al-Qaeda and who have been fighting the Somali federal government since 2007, for their part affirmed in a press release that they had “carried out two suicide operations against a military base of the Ethiopian forces in the locality of Doolow, in the region of Gedo”, on the Somali side of the border.
“The two operations caused a heavy toll in dead and wounded,” says the group, which is used to exaggerating the tolls of its attacks. The Shebab had attacked in the summer of 2022 several Ethiopian military camps on the border between the two countries.
The authorities of the Ethiopian region of Somalia, bordering Somalia, had indicated in mid-July that they had destroyed a group of around a hundred shebabs who had managed to infiltrate Ethiopian territory, around a hundred kilometers as the crow flies from the Somali border.
The Ethiopian army provides a contingent to the African Union force in Somalia (Atmis) which supports the Somali government against Shebab.
Driven out for ten years from the main urban centers, the Shebab remain established in vast rural areas, from where they continue to carry out attacks against government and civilian targets.