Chad’s transitional military authorities and rebels sign an agreement for a national dialogue, in Doha.
Chad’s military ruler, Mahamat Idriss Déby, has signed a peace deal with more than 40 opposition groups aimed at paving the way for a national dialogue later in August.
The agreement was signed in Doha after months of mediation by Qatar.
But the main rebel group, the Front for Change and Concord in Chad (or Fact), refused to sign the deal.
It had insisted Mr Déby excludes himself from elections.
He took over the leadership of the country last year after his father, Idriss Déby, died while on the front-line fighting rebels.
Elections are due to take place in October.
A signing ceremony for the agreement, which included the parties agreeing to take part in a national, inclusive dialogue, was attended by more than 30 rebel groups and followed months of talks in the Qatari capital.
Details, such as how the deal will be implemented and how adherence to it will be monitored, were not immediately released.
A source familiar with the agreement said those who had signed had agreed to a permanent ceasefire and to work towards civilian disarmament.
Chad’s interim military government had also committed to not launching military or police operations in neighbouring countries against groups who had signed up to the deal, the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Deby declared himself head of a Transitional Military Council in April 2021 after his father, long-time ruler Idriss Deby, was killed while visiting troops fighting the rebel insurgency in the north.
Initially, his council said it would oversee an 18-month transition to democratic rule, but it has shown little sign of organising elections as that deadline has neared.
The national dialogue, which is meant to include a wide range of groups and parties as well as the government and the rebels, is currently set to begin on August 20.
Qatar’s foreign minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, speaking at the signing, called on groups that had not signed to join the agreement.
Author: Staff Writer