Senior al-Shabaab prosecutor visits SNA in southern Somalia

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Senior al-Shabaab prosecutor visits SNA in southern Somalia

MOGADISHU, Somalia – A senior al-Shabaab prosecutor has abandoned the al-Qaida-linked group after years of service, becoming the last major defector even as Allied forces continue to whip militants in Somalia.

Mohamed Hassan Mo’alim aka Abu Ali, surrendered to the Somali National Armed Forces in the town of Qoryoley on Friday evening, officials said, adding he was one of the town’s most wanted militants.

State media said Mohamed Hassan had held several ranks within the militant group and was the chief prosecutor at the time of his surrender. Al-Shabaab has parallel courts where it prosecutes those it captures during combat.

“Mohamed Hassan, known Abu Ali, the head of the so-called terrorist group court in Kuntuwarey surrendered to the Somali National Army in Qoryoley district of Lower Shabelle region,” state media reported.

“Mohamed who has been a member of Al-Shabaab for several years denounced the ideology of the group,” state media noted, adding that he will be repatriated to the community after having attended several courses.

Qoryoley District Commissioner Sayid-Ali Ibrahim added that the surrender was facilitated by Somali National Army troops in the area. He surrendered without being forced, the officer noted, adding that the move was a major gain for the government.

Mohamed Hassan Maalim alias Abu-Ali was allegedly charged with prosecuting innocent civilians in Kuntuwarey and its surroundings. Al-Shabaab courts are notorious for prosecuting people by giving them a chance to have a legal presentation.

The group has long attempted to overthrow the fragile UN-backed Somali administration, but a concerted effort by the Somali National Army and AMISOM troops degraded the group inside the country.

His surrender comes as the United States searches for Al-Shabaab leader Ahmed Omar Diriye and his deputy Mahad Karate, whose whereabouts are still unknown. The group survives by collecting taxes from locals and sometimes by obtaining ransoms from captives.

AXADLETM

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