The opposition had called for demonstrations last Thursday against the regime of the Chadian president, who had just extended by two years the transition period leading to elections at the end of the Inclusive and Sovereign National Dialogue, which part of the opposition, civil society and armed rebellion had boycotted.
The transitional government had acknowledged on Thursday that “fifty people” had been killed, including a dozen members of the police, and accused the opposition for fomenting “an insurrection” and “a coup d’etat”. But the NGOs spoke of dozens of “peaceful demonstrators” shot dead and mentioned hundreds injured in N’Djamena and four southern towns.
Seven-day national mourning
It was “a real insurrection meticulously planned to create chaos in the country”, hammered Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno on Monday in a televised speech, accusing the demonstrators of having “coldly killed” “civilians” and ” assassinated” members of the security forces “in their barracks”, with “the manifest desire to start a civil war”.
He blamed the organization on the opposition and rebel groups who allegedly “recruited and used paramilitary terrorist groups to carry out wanton mass killings”, after “seeking the support of foreign powers” to “access power “. Without specifying which ones. The 38-year-old five-star general also declared national mourning for sept days and promised that justice would determine the “responsibility” in these “killings”.
Chad: why the demonstrations of October 20 turned tragic
On Monday, the World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) blamed the government for “serious human rights violations” in the repression of the demonstrations as well as the death of at least “80 people”. The NGO claims to have seized the UN special rapporteurs of cases of “summary executions” and “torture” against “peaceful demonstrators”.
Summit in Kinshasa
The African Union and the European Union had already “strongly condemned” the repression of the demonstrations and “serious attacks on the freedoms of expression and demonstration”. France, a key ally of N’Djamena, for its part “condemned” “the use of lethal weapons against the demonstrators”.
This Tuesday, October 25, in Kinshasa, the heads of state and government of the eleven countries of the Community of Central African States, including President Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno, are invited to an extraordinary summit to discuss, behind closed doors , the situation au Chad.