- The government of Chad has been confronted to explain the motive behind the illegal arrest, abduction and arbitrary detention of one of the three opposition leaders who disappeared during a fierce battle between troops loyal to the government and rebel forces in the capital N'Djamena on 3 February.
The lawyer of Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh, the leader of the Party for Liberty and Development (PLD), they wanted to know who arrested him, his place of detention and for what reason.
Saleh, also the mouthpiece of a coalition of political parties that defend the constitution, had disappeared alongside two other opposition leaders: Lol Mahamat Choua and Ngarlejy Yorongar.
Chadian government denied involvement in the disappearances, blaming the rebels for being responsible for the act. The rebels flatly refuted the allegations, questioning why they would kidnap anyone who opposes the government of Idriss Deby.
But the spokesman of the opposition Rally for Democracy and Progress of Choua said their leader arrested and mistreated by Presidential guards before disappearing with him to an unknown location.
The government spokesman, Hourmadji Moussa Doumgor, has confirmed that "Choua was held as a prisoner of war during the incursion, but his life was preserved."
Chadian authorities have been pressurised to launch a judicial inquiry into the disappearances.
In another development, President Idriss Deby has confirmed the appointment of Mahamat Ali Adballah Nassour as the Minister of Defence.
The former Energy Minister had been in charge of military operations since last year. He replaced the former Chief of Armed Forces, Daoud Soumain, who was killed while the government troops were busy trying to conquer the rebels in Massaguet, some 30 km from N'Djamena.
Nassour's appointment preceded the declaration of a state of emergency in Chad, which was triggered by few days of heavy fighting between the government and rebels in the capital. The dismissed former Minister of Defence, Mahamat Nour, led the rebels.
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