15th December 2009
This barbaric scene belongs in the Dark Ages, but pictures emerged today of a group of Islamic militants who forced villagers to watch as they stoned a man to death for adultery.
Mohamed Abukar Ibrahim, a 48-year-old, was buried in a hole up to his chest and pelted with rocks until he died.
The group responsible, Hizbul Islam, also shot dead a man they claimed was a murderer.
But the verdict was so shocking that it prompted a gun battle between rivals within the group that left three militants dead, witnesses said.
The executions took place yesterday in Afgoye, some 20 miles south-west of the capital of Mogadishu.
Hizbul Islam fighters ordered hundreds of residents to a field, where a rebel judge announced that the two men had confessed to murder and adultery.
A woman who had confessed to fornication had been sentenced to 100 lashes, he added.
'This is their day of justice,' the judge, Osman Siidow Hasan, told the crowd. 'We investigated and they confessed.'
But when some Hizbul Islam fighters wanted to delay the executions, a bloody gun battle broke out between the two factions, shocked residents said.