Chad: Peace Deal Dodging Bullets


April 5,2008: The UN is running a country within a country. In Eastern Chad, 237,000 refugees from Darfur, living in camps with a population of 15,000-30,000, have become tempting targets form rebels and bandits looking for a meal (stolen) or love (rape). In the south, there are about 30,000 Central African Republic (CAR) refugees, in three smaller camps. In both the east and the south, there are even more refugees outside the camps, giving a total refugee population of over 300,000. The UN peacekeeping force is still slowly moving into the area, with about 2,000 troops in the capital and on the eastern border. The total force is to be 3,700 strong, but that won't happen until later this year.

April 4, 2008: In the capital, troops have expelled over 10,000 people (after destroying some 1,800 homes) that were believed to support the rebels who attacked two months ago. Loyalties are generally along tribal lines, and the government began seeking out disloyal people in the capital once the rebels were driven away.

April 2, 2008: Sudan accuses Chad of sending troops across the border three times since yesterday.

April 1, 2008: Several hundred rebels from the National Alliance (the same crew that tried to capture the capital two months ago), attacked a government base on the border (near the village of Ade). They were repulsed, and appeared to retreat back into Sudan. The government accused Sudan of supporting this attack. The fighting spread to residential areas. Ade has a population of 1,000, plus another 10,000 Chadian refugees (from fighting between troops and rebels.) There were about 60 civilian casualties, including ten dead. There were another fifty military casualties from about four hours of fighting.

March 23, 2008: The government openly accused Sudan of violating the peace agreement and helping rebels prepare for new attacks on the Chadian army.


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