Somalia's Al-Shabab Names New Leader 

Somalia's Al-Shabab Names New Leader Somalia's Al-Shabab Names New Leader 

The Somalia-based militant group Al-Shabaab has named a successor to its leader killed in an American airstrike this week, a spokesman said Saturday.

The announcement came as Somalia braced for possible retaliation after Monday's killing of Ahmed Godane.

Al-Shabaab's new leader is Ahmed Omar Abu Ubaidah, spokesman Sheikh Ali Dheere said in an audio message posted online.

He is the group's third leader and was characterized as a low-ranking commander. No other information was available.

"The death of Godane will not stop the group from carrying out its terror operations," CNN quoted the spokesman as saying. "We lost our great leader Ahmed Godane and two other commanders in hands of the enemy on Monday night's US airstrike."

His confirmation came after days of denying his death.

Militants Attack African Union Troops

The Somali militants ambushed African Union peacekeeping troops in southwestern Somalia, a local official said.

The militants attacked a convoy carrying Ethiopian AU troops in two locations between the towns of Qansahdheere and Burdhubo, said Hassan Mohamud Ali, district commissioner of the latter town.

The AU troops eventually stopped the attack and secured the area, Ali said. No information was available on the casualties.

Shortly before the attack, the nation's security ministry placed government buildings on high alert because of the killing of Godane.

Intelligence reports indicated the group is planning attacks in Somalia, according to Mohamed Yusuf, a spokesman for the security ministry.

The Man Behind Al-Shabaab

Godane, who was also known as Mukhtar Abu Zubayr, became the leader of the militant group in 2008.

The group started off with a goal of waging a war against the Somali government.

A year ago, militants raided a mall in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi in an audacious siege that lasted days and left 67 people dead.

Godane publicly claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was revenge for Kenyan and Western involvement in Somalia and noting its proximity to the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.