Nearly a dozen soldiers and militants have been killed in an al-Shabab attack on an army base in southern Somalia.
the latest in series of deadly attacks on army bases in recent months, officials and residents say Monday.
At least one civilian has also been killed in the overnight attack in Qoryoley, an agricultural town in Lower Shabelle region on Sunday night, local officials told HOL.
According to residents, dozens of al-Shabab fighters firing small arms and propelled grenades have launched the attack on the Somali military base from multiple directions in an attempt to overrrun the base which houses dozens of soldiers.
However, military officials said that a reinforcement by the African Union forces at a nearby military base have forced al-Shabab fighters to withdraw under heavy gun battle nearly 30 minutes later.
One official told local media that several soldiers and militants were killed in the attack but did not give further details.
Attacks by al-Shabab on African Union and Somali military bases have become common in recent years; with fighters have managed to overrun several bases before, killing many soldiers and looted a significant amount of military hardware, something that have long alarmed security officials.
However, security officials have since fortified bases with more security personnel and armoured vehicles, a move they said helped troops to thwart multiple attempts by militants to overrun bases in recent months.