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Major Rebel Attacks in Chad Threaten Chadian Government (moved from ATSNN)

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posted on Apr, 13 2006 @ 09:27 AM
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Rebels, from a group called the United Front for Change (FUC), who have apparently been moving about for some time now in Chad, attacked the capital city of N'Djamena this morning. Latest reports suggest that there is now relative calm, even if there is much confusion. After three hours of early-morning fighting, the fighting seems to have ceased for now. There are, however, conflicting reports as to the situation in Chad.
 



www.alertnet.org
N'djamena residents heard mortar shell explosions in the eastern and north eastern areas of the city around 5 a.m. local time, followed by heavy machine gun fire after dawn broke. Chad army helicopters have fired rockets at rebel positions on the eastern outskirts of the city, and French fighter jets have attacked a rebel stronghold 300 kilometres east of N'djamena, Chad military sources told IRIN.

"The rebels don't have the capacity to win. We will finish the hostilities within 24 hours," said a government spokesman while presenting to journalists 20 rebels captured overnight by the army. At least 300 rebel fighters with around 50 vehicles have been spotted around the city outskirts, say residents. Chadian police confirmed there had been fighting between rebel and government forces in the city centre.

"It was a raid that didn't follow any kind of military strategy - it was like committing suicide," said Chadian President Idriss Deby in an interview with Radio France International on Thursday morning, adding that the army had "destroyed" several rebel columns.


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


I heard interesting reports on BBC radio this morning (on NPR). One reporter interviewed a rebel "leader," who suggested that they would take the city soon and depose President Deby. Others say that different factions are switiching uniforms to confuse the enemy. One thing is certain, BBC was confused by all the various reports coming in.

Some other interesting things to note: Some reports suggest that there are French troops on the ground, but that they are not getting involved (some even suggested it might be because Chad awarded a major oil contract to the U.S. recently instead of France). The FUC representative in France, Laona Gong, who is the former Chadian foreign minister, has claimed that the French have bombed civilian targets.

President Deby (as best as I could tell from the BBC report) was claiming that the rebels were in some way aided, armed, funded, and/or staffed by the government of Sudan. He has suggested that he will report them to the U.N. Security Council.

I'm not sure what's going on over there, but it has all the interesting elements (oil, Sudan, the French, rebels, Security Council, intrigueetc.) that make for a good argument these days.

Related News Links:
Allegations of French bombings
www.timesonline.co.uk
euronews.net

[edit on 13-4-2006 by Hamburglar]

[edit on 13-4-2006 by Hamburglar]




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