November 02, 2019 (AO) – The Somali interior minister Abdi Mohamed Sabriye escaped a likely assassination attempt as his convoy was attacked by militiamen in Mataban district of Hiran region in central Somalia.

The district governor of Mataban Daule Adan Abdi speaking to Somali media outlets confirmed that militiamen loyal to Ahlusunna group attacked the convoy of the Somali interior minister in an assassination attempt –which resulted in a heavy fighting that drove them away from Mataban.

Reports from Mataban located about 400kilometers North of Mogadishu indicate that the Somali government troops have seized full control of the strategic city, linking between the Northern and Southern regions of Somalia.

Ahlu-sunna militia men who have been driven out of the city are based just a few kilometers away, receiving new reinforcements and are expected to redeploy their men along the frontlines as reorganization is underway.

Media tried multiple times to contact the Somali minister of the interior Abdi Mohamed Sabriye, however, the minister declined to give details of the fighting and the attempted murder on his life as he was busy in meetings with the district’s traditional elders.

Officials of Ahlu-sunna militiamen told Media that the government has embarked on efforts to destabilize the region and that their fighters fought in defense against an apparent aggression as the interior minister entered the city by force.

“Our men are now on the outskirts of the city reorganizing their ranks and receiving reinforcements from various districts in the region. They will be dispatched soon in an operation aimed to retake Mataban” said a high-ranking member of Ahlusunna militiamen speaking to Somaliguardian on the condition of anonymity.

Ahlu-sunna and the government previously signed agreements; however, both sides accused each other of breaking terms of the agreements -which ignited the current conflict shadowing the already delicate security in the region.