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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 April 2007, 10:23 GMT 11:23 UK
Fresh fatalities in Somali clash
Ethiopian troops in Somalia
African Union troops are supposed to replace the Ethiopians
Fresh clashes between Ethiopian troops and insurgents have left seven people dead and more than 50 injured in the Somali capital, hospital sources say.

A spokesman for Mogadishu's dominant Hawiye clan said tension is high but the ceasefire agreement still holds.

The cabinet is meeting to discuss security and may approve the sacking of ministers opposed to the government.

Deputy Prime Minister Hussein Aideed says the Ethiopians have committed genocide since arriving in December.

I saw three bodies pulled out of a house
Mogadishu resident

Ethiopia had dismissed Mr Aideed's comments as absolute fabrication.

The Ethiopians arrived at the request of the transitional government, to oust the Union of Islamic Courts that was then in control.

The UN refugee agency says hundreds of residents have been killed and some 200,000 others have fled Mogadishu as government and Ethiopian soldiers battle insurgents - both Islamists and Hawiye fighters.

Sharp divisions

Heavy shelling and mortars landed on residential areas in the south of Mogadishu on Tuesday night as Ethiopian-backed government forces battled with militants.

Hussein Mohammed Aideed
Hussein Aideed is a member of Mogadishu's Hawiye clan

?I saw three bodies pulled out of a house,? Abdirahman Bile, a resident of Towfiq neighbourhood told Reuters news Agency.

Hawiye clan elders and commanders from Ethiopian forces agreed a tentative ceasefire earlier this month.

Mr Aideed, a former war lord and an influential member of the Hawiye clan, has called on Ethiopian forces to leave Somalia signalling sharp divisions within the interim administration.

On Tuesday, a meeting of the Somali parliament in Baidoa voted to expel 31 members of parliament.

Among them was the former parliament speaker, Sharif Hassan Sheikh Adan.

He, along with Islamist leader Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, is staying in neighbouring Eritrea - Ethiopia's regional rival.

Mr Adan opposed Ethiopia's intervention and has called for peace talks with the Islamists.

Ethiopia says it has started to withdraw some of its troops from Somalia and will gradually handover responsibilities to the African Union force.

So far only 1,200 Ugandans have arrived, of the planned 8,000-strong force.


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