Ethiopian troops in Somalia

Ethiopian troops are supporting the transitional government

At least eight civilians have been killed and 12 people wounded in fresh fighting in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, witnesses say.

Fighting broke out when insurgents ambushed Ethiopian forces returning from a security operation, near the football stadium in Towfiq district.

Casualty figures among the fighting forces were not clear.

Ethiopian troops are supporting the Somali government against an alliance of Islamist opposition groups.

Following the ambush on Saturday, the Ethiopians and the Islamist insurgents pounded each other with heavy artillery, rocket-propelled grenades and machine-guns for two hours, forcing many residents to flee.

“We have seen seven dead bodies, they were civilians shot by Ethiopians after the ambush,” said Ahmed Nor Kheyre, a watchman at a garage near the stadium.

Another man died after he was caught by a stray bullet.

Doctors at Medina and Keysaney hospitals said 12 wounded people had been admitted to their facility for treatment.

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