A court in Somalia’s northeastern State of Puntland has sentenced 43 Al-Shabaab militants taken prisoner during clashes with security forces to death, Garowe Online reports.  Puntland prosecuting attorney at military court Abdullahi Hirsi Elmi (Ali Bare) told BBC Somali Service the 43 militants admitted to being Al-Shabaab members before the court in terrorism case.

He said, all defendants were convicted of the membership to Al-Shabaab terror group.

Ali Bare added that 54 of 97 Al-Shabaab fighters captured in Suuj and Garacad counteroffensives were deemed minor boys with no intelligence value to be arraigned in military court.

The prosecutor noted that the convicted militants can appeal against verdicts, though the final say rests with the government.

Last week, Puntland President Abdiweli Mohamed Ali vowed that Al-Shabaab prisoners could be executed in revenge for the targeted Al-Shabaab killings against Puntland people.

In March, Puntland forces neutralized boatloads of Al-Shabaab fighters amid bitter dissension within the Somali militant group.

Intense onslaughts that tightened noose on militants in central and southern Somalia is believed to have led to exodus towards Galgala Mountains where Puntland troops have battled militants in sporadic clashes since mid-2010.