Rebel attacks and army retaliation
On 2 and 3 February 2008, there was a rebel attack on N’Djamena. Serious human rights violations were committed during violent clashes. Most of the acts of violence occurred after the Chad National Army (ANT) had taken back control of the town.
Retaliation by the army took many forms : extrajudicial executions, arbitrary arrests, illegal detention and forced disappearances, including that of Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh.
An academic, former minister, and founder of the Party for Liberty and Development (PLD), who stood for the Presidency in 2001, Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh in 2008 was the main spokesman for the unarmed opposition in Chad.
On 3 February 2008 he was taken from his home, in front of witnesses, by soldiers from the presidential guard.
According to the Commission of Inquiry set up to shed light on the events of February 2008, more than 400 rebels who were taken prisoner have also disappeared.
Total impunity for forced disappearances
The report by the Chad Commission of Inquiry into the events of February 2008 notes ‘involvement of high-level Chadian military authorities’ in the disappearance of Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh. The report’s authors also ask : ‘in a regime in which power is very strongly centralised, could a soldier, even a high-ranking one, organise […] the disappearance of political opponents without the consent of the President of the Republic ?’
The Commission recommends ‘an urgent investigation, followed up by court proceedings, to find out exactly what happened to Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh’. To date, none of the perpetrators or instigators of forced disappearances has been clearly identified and brought before the Chadian courts. No action has been taken on the Commission’s recommendations because of a lack of political will to implement them.
On the contrary, the Chadian authorities have prevented any implementation of these recommendations, in particular by setting up a ‘puppet’ monitoring committee made up exclusively of government minister
You can write to the Chad President on his Internet site.