MOGADISHU, Somalia – Somalia’s army forces have on Sunday withdrew military bases in pay protest, amid rising attacks by Al Qaeda linked Al Shabaab.
The army forces vacated their military bases in the coastal town of Barawe in protest at not being paid for four months.
Barawe, a town 180 km (110 miles) south of Somali capital, Mogadishu.
A military officer, who asked to be anonymous, said the soldiers are protesting over months of missed pay.
Local residents warned that army’s withdrawal could boost the militants’ presence in Somalia’s Lower Shabelle region.
In 05-Oktoobar-2014, African Union and Somali troops took control of Barawe, a port town used by al Shabaab to bring in arms and fighters from abroad, after the al Qaeda-linked militants fled without a fight.
The army forces already vacated several towns in south of Somalia, where Al Shabaab reportedly recaptured, shortly after military’s departure.
However, according to Mogadishu, only those soldiers who had failed to register were not being paid.