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From Somalia



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MOGADISHU (Reuters) – Ethiopian tanks rumbled south from Mogadishu to attack Somali Islamists on Saturday after the religious movement’s leaders called on their fighters to take a stand in the port city of Kismayu.

Sheikh Sharif Ahmed, whose forces fled the Somali capital on Thursday, also urged thousands of residents gathered at a Kismayu stadium for the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha to defend their country and faith from government troops backed by armor, soldiers and jet fighter planes from mostly Christian Ethiopia.

“Our country is under occupation so we have decided to fight,” he told the crowd as Islamist troops on trucks mounted with anti-aircraft guns stood guard outside.



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