The Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) fighters have forced a group of recently-arrived Ethiopian soldiers into a retreat from Somalia.
A PressTv correspondent reported that the fighters slaughtered 33 of the soldiers and destroyed three of their military vehicles after the troops crossed the common border to join the Somali military.
One UIC soldier also died during the fighting which took place in the Jawiil region near the Somali-Ethiopian border, said one local Sheikh Abdirahim Isse Addow.
Most of the soldiers were killed stepping on landmines. Unlike Ugandan and Burundi regiments there, the troops apparently lacked the beep alarm system that activates upon approaching landmines seeded every 10 meters in the area.
Also contributing to their heavy losses was the inexperience of the troops whom the correspondent likened more to ‘militiamen’ than trained soldiers.
Unknown attackers, meanwhile, were reported to have taken the lives of four civilians in the capital, Mogadishu.