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CrisisWatch Chad

Deteriorated Situation

Clashes erupted in north between army and ethnic Tebu defence forces, as army continued operations against Libya-based armed groups in north and Boko Haram in west. Army operations in Miski area in north, which it said were aimed at driving out illegal gold miners, arms traffickers and slave traders, escalated early Nov into confrontation with local Tebu community intent on retaining control of area and its resources. Some army veterans, civilians and former rebels early Nov formed Tebu Self-Defence Committee to prevent what it sees as “Déby’s clan” exploiting Tibesti gold mines. Govt 17 Nov claimed army had dislodged “the enemy” from Miski, which Tebu Self-Defence Committee denied, claiming 20 Nov that it had driven out army. Ground operations and airstrikes reportedly caused many casualties in army and among local forces. Opposition leader 22 Nov called on President Déby to open national dialogue on far north. Parliamentary opposition 28 Nov appealed for cessation of hostilities and parliamentary visit to north to listen to population and then discuss its demands with govt to find solution. Clashes continued between army and Libya-based armed groups around Kouri Bougoudi in north. Déby 9 Nov replaced defence minister with former head of gendarmerie and replaced security minister with Mahamat Abba Ali Salah, a Tebu. U.S. 16 Nov donated six boats and six vehicles worth $1.3mn to military brigade carrying out operations against Boko Haram in Lake Chad area. Govt and African Development Bank 14 Nov initiated program that aims to provide govt $21mn in budgetary support to boost economic recovery. National Framework for Political Dialogue 12 Nov said legislative elections, already postponed to Nov, would again be pushed back to May 2019. Déby 25-27 Nov visited Israel and met PM Netanyahu and President Rivlin, restoring diplomatic relations cut off since 1972; two countries have maintained trade relationship.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

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.

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.

Report / Africa

Watchmen of Lake Chad: Vigilante Groups Fighting Boko Haram

Regional armies in the Lake Chad basin deploy vigilantes to sharpen campaigns against Boko Haram insurgents. But using these militias creates risks as combatants turn to communal violence and organised crime. Over the long term they must be disbanded or regulated.

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Forced out of Towns in the Sahel, Africa’s Jihadists Go Rural

Jihadist groups have regrouped in the neglected hinterlands of Sahel countries and are launching attacks from them. To regain control of outlying districts, regional states must do far more to extend services and representation beyond recently recaptured provincial centres.

Report / Africa

Chad: Between Ambition and Fragility

Ahead of Chad’s presidential election on 10 April popular discontent is rising amid a major economic crisis, growing intra-religious tensions and deadly Boko Haram attacks. The regime that portrays itself as spearheading the fight against regional jihadism could see all sorts of violent actors gain influence at home if it pursues exclusionary politics and denies its people a viable social contract.

Also available in Français

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Thibaud Lesueur

Consulting Senior Analyst, Central Africa