Somali forces kill 39 al-Shabab militants in central region

MOGADISHU, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- The Somali National Army on Monday killed 39 al-Shabab militants after heavy fighting near the central town of Harardhere, said a military official.

The local forces backed by international partners killed the militants who had burned down a commuter bus when escaping from the battlefield, the Commander for the Infantry Mohamed Tahlil Bihi told the state-run Radio Mogadishu on Monday.

"Our forces are making progress on the war against terrorists on several fronts," said Bihi.

The fighting came a day after the militant group carried out a deadly attack on Sunday in Somalia's capital Mogadishu.