MOGADISHU (HAN) February 7, 2016 – Public Diplomacy and Regional Stability Initiatives News. The Somali government and African Union forces have retaken the southern port town of Merka. They had earlier pulled out on Friday, allowing Al Shabab fighters to seize the city. Residents say that some fighting took place as AMISOM forces pushed out the militants. Civilian casualties have also been reported due to latest fighting.