Puntland court sentences 7 to death for Al-Shabab link
A military court in northern Somalia town of Bosaso has on Monday sentenced seven suspected al-Shabab Islamist militants to death.
Abdifatah Haji Aden, the Chairman of Puntland’s military court, said, the militants are proved to have been part of a high profile assassination against Puntland officials.
Aden earlier accused the militants of having carried out coordinated assassinations against Puntland officials.
“After all the court proceeding including hearings and the presentation of evidences the court sentences these seven men to death,” Aden said. “They can take an appeal within 30 days otherwise the sentence will be carried out.”
At the court, before the sentence were announced, some of the defendants shouted “We are innocent!”
The defendants’ lawyers said, “The sentence was unfair and no credible evidences were brought before the court.”
The past three months suspected militants killed three senior Puntland officials in Bosaso port city, the commercial hub of Puntland.
Those killed included the third deputy commander of police forces, Jama Sahardiid, the director of Puntland’s presidential palace, Aden Huruse, and the prosecutor of the Puntland military court, Abdkarim Hassan Firdiye.
Al-Shabab’s insurgency aims to drive out African Union peacekeepers, topple Somalia’s Western-backed government, and impose its strict version of Islam on the Horn of Africa state.
Meanwhile, three people were killed and three others injured early Monday when suspected al-Shabab militants attacked a government military post in Qalimow Village, 50 kilometers north of Mogadishu.
Witnesses and officials told VOA that those killed included two government soldiers and one militant.