CBC News - - A day after Ethiopia declared war against Islamic militants in Somalia, it sent fighter jets across the border to bomb two airports amid fears of violence engulfing the Horn of Africa.
In mid-morning Monday, the jets dropped bombs over the capital on Somalia's main airport, Mogadishu International Airport. It was the first direct attack on the headquarters of the Council of Islamic Courts, the Islamic movement that has been trying to take power from the United Nations-backed interim government in Somalia.
There were no immediate reports of injuries, but an Associated Press reporter who arrived after the strike saw paramedics transport one wounded woman.
A militant with the Islamic movement — the Council of Islamic Courts — said another airport about 100 kilometres outside Mogadishu was hit with a bomb shortly afterward.
An adviser to Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi said the government was bombing "non-civilian targets" in Somalia to "disable and prevent the delivery of arms and supplies to the Islamic courts."
Zenawi said in a live speech broadcast on radio and TV late Sunday that the Ethiopian parliament had passed a resolution that would allow the country to protect its sovereignty.
"To defend the attack from the [Council] of Islamic Courts, we are forced to go into war today," Zenawi said.
The Council of Islamic Courts controls much of southern Somalia, including Mogadishu, and wants to rule Somalia according to Islamic law.
Ethiopia, a largely Christian nation, has been backing Somalia's two-year-old interim government, which is also largely Christian. That government has been losing ground to the Islamists since June.
In an effort to keep the Islamic movement from recruiting foreign fighters into its ranks — something the Somali government has long accused the council of trying to do — Ethiopia started sealing its borders on Monday.
The Islamic fighters say they are prepared for war and are ready to defend the country.
Sunday marked the first time Ethiopia admitted to having troops on the ground in Somalia, even though witnesses had been reporting their presence for weeks.