| 22 May 2024, Wednesday |

Chadian police fire tear gas to disperse protest against military government

Chadian security forces fired tear gas to disperse demonstrators who took to the streets of the capital N’Djamena on Saturday to protest against a military takeover that came after the death of President Idriss Deby on the battlefield last month.

The transitional military government, led by Deby’s son Mahamat Idriss Itno, on Friday had banned the demonstration called by a coalition of civil society groups and opposition parties.

A strong ally of Western nations in combating Islamist militants in central and western Africa, Chad has witnessed growing political tensions since the president’s death.

Although the military has vowed to organize elections within 18 months, some opposition parties have rejected the military-led transitional cabinet, calling it a coup and a continuation of Deby’s 30-year rule.

The opposition parties want the transitional government to be led by a civilian.

In defiance to the ban, groups of demonstrators took to the streets on Saturday morning, chanting and brandishing flags, while others carried printed messages condemning what they called a “monarchy”.

“The police prevented us from demonstrating,” said Real Mianrounga, a civil society group leader, who noted that he had been wounded as he attempted to flee a police charge on a group that attempted to gather in downtown N’Djamena.

“Those who resisted were violently reprimanded by the police. There were some injuries,” Mianrounga added.

  • Reuters