Somali militants cut off hands of two accused thieves -al Shabaab

By Feisal Omar

MOGADISHU Dec 15 (Reuters) – Al Shabaab militants cut off
the right hands of two alleged thieves in a region of Somalia
controlled by the al Qaeda- affiliated group, a senior al
Shabaab official said on Thursday.

The Islamist movement has been fighting for years to drive
out African Union peacekeepers, topple Somalia’s Western-backed
central government and impose its brand of sharia (Islamic law)
in the Horn of Africa country.

Two men, Farah Bile Mohamud and Quri Osman Abdi, admitted at
a trial to stealing money from a shop and a judge ordered the
right hands of both to be cut off, the al Shabaab governor of
the Galgadud region, Sheikh Hassan Ali, told Reuters.

The order was carried out on Wednesday, he said.

In areas under its control, al Shabaab has carried out
executions, floggings and single-limb amputations after summary
trials on charges including theft or espionage.

Al Shabaab once held large swathes of Somalia including
Mogadishu before being ousted from the capital in 2011 and
losing further ground, though they continue to pose a formidable
threat with bombings in Somalia and neighbouring Kenya.

Kenya’s military forms part of the African Union
peacekeeping force that props up Somalia’s central government.

Al Shabaab has sought to disrupt Somalia’s protracted
parliamentary elections – part of efforts to rebuild the
fractured nation after decades of civil war. The three-month
vote is due to end on Dec. 29.

(Writing by Elias Biryabarema; editing by Mark Heinrich)

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