Chad’s opposition, HROs slam president’s comments on inter-ethnic conflicts

APA-NDjamena (Chad)

A major controversy has emerged in Chad where human rights organizations and the opposition strongly denounced President Idriss Déby’s comments on inter-ethnic conflicts in the east of the country, advising the police to shoot any protagonist who refused to lay down their weapon.

“After three warnings, if an assailant doesn’t stop, kill him!” Déby hammered in a speech on Sunday in eastern Chad, where he is on tour. 


The Chadian President has also introduced a three-month state of emergency, another measure to put an end to the inter-community conflicts that have killed around 100 farmers and herders living near the border with Sudan in recent months.


More than this last measure, the one of shooting “after a warning” at any recalcitrant person shocked human rights defenders, the political class and many Chadians.


For example, the Secretary General of the Chadian Convention for the Defence of Human Rights (CTDDH), Mahamat Nour Ibedou, said he was deeply shocked by Idriss Déby’s call for the massacre of civilians.


According to Ibedou, President Déby also “expressly” ordered the military that in the event of new conflicts; they have the green light to kill 10 people from each of the warring parties.


“This irresponsible and extremely dangerous statement is indicative of the state of mind of an individual for whom human life has never been important. The CTDDH considers that this instruction is all the more serious as it targets illiterate soldiers without faith or law and who will find this an opportunity to carry out free and extrajudicial massacres,” deplored Mahamat Nour Ibédou.


For his part, opponent Saleh Kebzabo hammered: “This call to murder that allows a situation of lawlessness is unacceptable.


While calling Déby a “dictator,” another opponent, Mahamat Ahmad Alhabo, accused the head of state of seriously weakening “institutions and especially justice, an essential pillar of a true rule of law.”


Ordinary citizens have called on non-governmental organizations and human rights defenders to document every gunshot death in Sila and Ouaddaï, the two eastern provinces where inter-ethnic conflicts rage.



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