Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Making Sense of Chad

Pambazuka News: "Last weekend’s battle in the Chadian capital N’djamena came as no surprise. For the last two years, the Sudan government has been trying to overthrow the Chadian president, Idriss Deby, using Chadian rebels as proxy forces. The three armed groups involved in the latest attack were all extensively armed by Sudanese Security, which has the clear intent of cutting off the support that Deby is giving to Darfurian rebels, especially the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), which has recently been on the offensive in Darfur. The timing is no surprise either. In the next few weeks, a European Union protection force (EUFOR) was due to deploy to eastern Chad and north-eastern Central African Republic. While EUFOR’s mandate (given by the UN Security Council) is for impartial civilian protection, it is a substantially French initiative, and seen by all in the region as a military protection for Deby. Khartoum and the rebels wanted to strike first."