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CrisisWatch Chad

Deteriorated Situation

Boko Haram (BH) launched deadliest attack on security forces to date; implementation of new rules in prison in attempt to halt spread of COVID-19 sparked prison mutiny in capital N’Djamena. In Lake Chad province in west, BH militants from faction reportedly loyal to Abubakar Shekau’s group (JAS) 23 March killed at least 98 soldiers on Boma peninsula in deadliest BH attack on govt forces. President Déby 24 March declared three days of national mourning and 29 March launched new counter-insurgency operation in Boma area. Following attack, govt redirected 500 soldiers it had planned to deploy by end of March to Niger-Mali-Burkina Faso border area in support of G5 Sahel forces to Lake Chad. In East, unidentified assailants 5 March attacked Kolkobodo village, Dar Sila province, killing six civilians. Provincial authorities 21 March installed Cherif Abdelhadi Mahadi as new Sultan of Ouaddaï in Ouaddaï province (east); Arab community leaders boycotted inauguration ceremony while locals protested appointment in provincial capital Abéché and demanded return of former sultan. Déby 1-3 March toured Borkou and Tibesti provinces in north in attempt to rebuild relations with local Tebu population, promised infrastructure investments and deployment of security forces to stabilise restive border regions. Prisoners 20 March attempted to break out of prison in N’Djamena following implementation of visitor restrictions to tackle spread of COVID-19; NGO Chadian Convention for the Defence of Human Rights said five prisoners died and 30 escaped.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

1 Apr 2020
[Chadian president Déby] has a pretty fractious inner circle, and he knows that any local conflict could quickly escalate into a national one. Foreign Policy

Richard Moncrieff

Project Director, Central Africa
25 Sep 2017
[There are no] significant indications of other violent extremist activity [in Chad aside from Boko Haram], so in that respect, [the decision to include Chad in the U.S. travel ban] is completely baffling. The Washington Post

Richard Moncrieff

Project Director, Central Africa

Latest Updates

Commentary / Africa

The Sahel: Promoting Political alongside Military Action

Rural insurgencies across the Sahel are destabilising the region and undermining local security and governance. In this excerpt from our Watch List 2018, Crisis Group urges the EU and its member states to continue support for the Alliance for the Sahel and promote local dialogue to buttress law and order.

Report / Africa

Force du G5 Sahel : trouver sa place dans l’embouteillage sécuritaire

Créée en février 2017, la Force conjointe du G5 Sahel est une force de nouvelle génération dans un espace sahélien où se bousculent des initiatives militaires et diplomatiques parfois concurrentes. Il ne suffira pas de fournir des armes et de l’argent pour résoudre les crises sahéliennes. Pour atteindre ses objectifs, la force doit gagner la confiance des populations et des puissances régionales et obtenir leur soutien.

Also available in English
Commentary / Africa

In Backing Chad, the West Faces Moral Hazards

The West sees Chad as a reliable ally in the fight against extremists in the African Sahel. But it needs to take more care. Chad is breaking prior agreements by spending much of its oil revenue on the military, while social services and good governance have suffered.

Fighting Boko Haram in Chad: Beyond Military Measures

Since 2015, the conflict between Chad’s armed forces and Boko Haram has destabilised the Lake Chad region in the west of the country. Defeating this resilient insurgency requires the state to go beyond a purely military campaign and relaunch trade, improve public services and reintegrate demobilised militants.

Also available in Français
Commentary / Africa

Lake Chad Basin: Controlling the Cost of Counter-insurgency

The Boko Haram insurgency is weakening in the Lake Chad basin, but its underlying socio-economic drivers remain to be addressed. In this excerpt from our Watch List 2017, we urge the EU and its member states to support regional governments with winding down vigilante groups, funding youth employment projects, rebuilding agriculture and trade, and restoring public services.

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Thibaud Lesueur

Consulting Senior Analyst, Central Africa