A senior official of Al Shabaab have said the terror group will give 10 camels to anyone who helps to locate President Barack Obama, mocking a US offer of up to $33 million for tip-offs enabling the arrest of its top leaders.
“We are offering 10 camels for any information concerning Obama,” said Fu’ad Mohamed Khalaf alias Shongole adding that “we are going to reward 10 hens and 10 cocks to anyone easing information about (Hillary) Clinton.”
“I can assure you that these kind of things will never dissuade us from continuing the holy war against them,” said “Shongole” in a message carried on several websites.
“There is nothing new in the fact that infidels pay to have Muslim leaders killed. They already did that by offering camels for the head of Prophet Mohammed, and the dollar is the camel of today,” he said.
He was referring to an offer of 100 camels made for Mohammed when he was fleeing Mecca for Medina, according to the Koran. He said the militants will seize any American in reaction to the bounty on their heads.
On Thursday, the US offered $7 million to information leading to the capture of Al-Shabaab’s Ameer (Spiritual Leader), Ahmed Abdi Aw Mohammed Godane, also known as Sheikh Mukhtar Abdurahman Aby Zubayr.
Other rewards were offered for other six wanted militant leaders including Sheikh Shongole. On Friday, the TFG issued a statement, welcoming the position taken by the United States in offering rewards towards the capture of the top Al-Shabaab leaders.
“The bounty on the leaders of Al-Shabaab was a step on the right direction,” a press release by the TFG’s ministry of Information stated.
According to the TFG, the rewards on Al Shabaab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane was realisation of his sinister initiatives that caused the killing of many Somalis and other innocent people in neighbouring countries.
TFG Prime Minister, Prof Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, reiterated on Friday that Al Shabaab was the cause of hardship in Somalia. While hailing the American move, he suggested assistance to the Somali government in the fight against the fanatical militants.
“All the countries whose citizens were harmed by Al Shabaab loyalists ought to help the TFG to eliminate terrorism,” remarked PM Ali.
The State Department said in a statement announcing the bounty for seven Al Shabaab leaders that “the group is responsible for the killing of thousands of Somali civilians, Somali peace activists, international aid workers, journalists and African Union peacekeepers”.
Al Shabaab still control large parts of southern Somalia, but African Union troops, government forces and Ethiopian soldiers have clawed back several key bases from the insurgents in recent months.