Published February 11, 2013
NAIROBI, Kenya – A joint Somali-African Union investigation into a case of civilian casualties found that African Union troops killed seven civilians, including five children.
The investigation, though, found that the troops acted within internationally accepted rules of engagement during the mid-January incident. It said that the al-Qaida-linked group, al-Shabab, attacked an African Union patrol near a village, and that the soldiers defended themselves appropriately.
The force commander, Lt. Gen. Andrew Gutti, said he was saddened by the loss of civilian life, but he blamed the incident on al -Shabab, saying that the group demonstrates little regard for the safety of the Somali people.