Rival Somali Islamic militias clash, killing 14

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MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — Witnesses says at least 14 people have been killed in clashes between rival Islamic militias battling for control of a strategic western Somali town.

They say a moderate Islamic group allied to the government, Ahlu Sunna Waljama, launched an attack Sunday against its rival in Belet Weyne. The town borders Ethiopia and is on a major road leading to the capital.

The clashes between Ahlu Sunna Waljama and Hizbul Islam continued Monday.

Belet Weyne resident Omar Adam says he saw the bodies of eight people, mostly civilians, on the streets. Another resident, Ibrahim Qayle, separately says he has counted six bodies belonging to Islamic fighters.

Somalia has not had an effective government for 19 years.