Heavy fighting reported between Somali troops backed by Djibouti peacekeepers and Al-Shabaab in Hiran region of central Somalia on Tuesday, residents, and officials said.

The battle erupted after the militants ambushed a military camp outside Bulo-Burde airstrip which is protected by Djibouti soldiers serving under AU mission in Somalia [AMISOM].

Al-Shabaab, the Al-Qaeda-linked militant group has claimed responsibility for the military base attack, saying it killed two government soldiers during the clash.

The allied troops have launched operations against Al-Shabaab militants in southern Somalia, in an attempt to drive out the group from the entire regions of the country.