Chad: The Bloody Peace


November 11, 2010: Four former rebel leaders, thinking they had an amnesty deal, were arrested when they flew into Chad. The four included former Chad officials who went on to form the UFDD. Three years ago, four rebel groups, led by the UFDD (Union of Forces for Democracy and Development) negotiated a peace deal with the government. But this did not take, with accusations from both sides. The fighting continued until Chad and Sudan agreed to stop supporting each other's rebels. The arrest of the returning UFDD leaders will encourage other rebel leaders to keep fighting. The government appears confident it can handle any resumption of violence.

The end of the war, for the moment, has put a lot of surplus weapons on the market. Counter-terror operations have detected al Qaeda groups operating on the West Coast of Africa sending people to Chad to see about buying some of those weapons, and getting them smuggled out of the country.

Even though the 3,000 UN peacekeepers won't leave until the end of the year, bandit groups are already moving in, and raiding towns and refugee camps. The government does not appear willing to station sufficient troops along the Sudanese border to keep the bandits at bay. Week by week, until December 31st, UN security operations are being shut down in the east, and often there is nothing to replace them.


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