Chad’s Idriss Deby Wins 6th Term As Army Pushes Rebel Advance | Election News

The veteran president, who came to power during a rebellion in 1990, won 79.3% of the vote in the April 11 elections.

Chadian President Idriss Deby has won a sixth term, provisional election results show, as the army said it had pushed back a column of fighters advancing on the capital, Ndjamena.

Deby, 68, who came to power in a rebellion in 1990, won 79.3% of the vote in the April 11 election, the results showed on Monday.

The main opposition leaders boycotted the vote.

Deby was expected to deliver a victory speech to supporters, but his campaign manager, Mahamat Zen Bada, said he instead visited Chadian soldiers on the front lines.

“The candidate would have liked to be here to celebrate … but for the moment, he is alongside our valiant defense and security forces to fight the terrorists who threaten our territory,” Zen Bada told reporters.

The rebel group Front for Change and Concord in Chad (FACT), based across the northern border with Libya, attacked a border post on election day, then advanced hundreds of kilometers south.

But he suffered a setback over the weekend.

Chad’s military spokesman Azem Bermendao Agouna told Reuters news agency that army troops killed more than 300 fighters and captured 150 on Saturday in Kanem province, about 300 kilometers away. from Ndjamena.

Five government soldiers were killed and 36 were injured, he said.

It was not possible to independently verify the number of victims.

FACT said in a statement that an “mistake” on Saturday had “slowed down the victorious march … towards Ndjamena a bit” but that the rebels routed the army on Sunday and Monday, killing, wounding and capturing hundreds of soldiers.

Chadian rebel leader Mahamat Mahdi Ali, meanwhile, told French radio that his forces had temporarily withdrawn and accused the former French colonizer of intervening in the crisis. In his comments to Radio France Internationale, he claimed that the French army carried out reconnaissance flights which gave an unfair advantage to government forces.

France has not publicly commented on the rebel crisis in Chad.

Chadian state television showed footage on Sunday of a crowd of soldiers clapping alongside what state television said were dozens of captured rebel fighters, sitting with their hands tied behind their backs.

The unrest raised alarm bells among Western countries, which saw Deby as an ally in the fight against armed groups, including Boko Haram in the Lake Chad Basin and groups linked to al-Qaeda and the ISIS group (ISIS ) in the Sahel.

Deby, who has long faced armed groups in the north, also faces growing public discontent with his handling of Chad’s oil wealth and the crackdown on opponents.

The United States ordered all non-essential staff at its embassy to leave the country on Saturday. The British government had urged its citizens to leave the day before.

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