Al-Shabaab has paraded a senior military commander it said defected from Jubbaland army in its stronghold town of Jilib in Middle Jubba region.

The commander, Hassan Khaire Hussein, is said to have deserted from the Jubbaland and joined the Al-Qaeda-linked group which tries to topple the UN-backed Federal government.

Speaking to pro-militants’ media outlet, Hussein said he left the regional forces based in Bula-Gadud village, located on the outskirts of the southern port city of Kismayo.

Al-Shabab has released photos of the defector armed with an AK-47 rifle and clad in military fatigue standing along with other soldiers in Jilib town.

Jubbaland authorities are yet to comment on the defection of the army officer who is said to have deserted the state before joining the militant group.