Somalia leader declares country a war zone, replaces chiefs

Somalia's new president has declared the country a war zone and replaced its military and intelligence chiefs while instructing the army to prepare a new offensive against al-Shabab extremists.

The shakeup Thursday is an attempt to improve the worsening security situation as the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab steps up its deadly bombings in the capital since President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed was elected in February.

The Somali-American president wore a military uniform as he declared a "new offensive against terrorist groups." He is giving extremists a 60-day amnesty to surrender.

The changes are seen as an attempt by Mohamed to consolidate power in this long-chaotic horn of Africa nation. He has replaced the country's police chief and Mogadishu's mayor.

Al-Shabab has denounced the president as an "apostate" and warned Somalis against supporting him.