A Somali military official says at least 10 people have been killed in an attack on a military base Friday by the Islamic extremists of al-Shabab.

Col. Mohamed Mumin said nearly 60 militants and a suicide car bomber targeted the army base in Barire in Lower Shabelle region leading to fierce clashes.

In a radio broadcast Al-Shabab claimed a higher death toll, saying that its fighters killed 23 soldiers and have taken over the base. The group also claimed that its fighters seized seven pickup trucks.

Despite losing most of its key strongholds to the Somali army and the regional forces of the African Union, al-Shabab has ramped up its campaign against the Somali government in recent months, largely targeting army bases across the country.