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Chad redeploys army throughout Sudanese border to stop militias’ attacks

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Ali Hamed Anur Shogar, who says he’s fighting for the rebel Sudan Liberation Army, sits in a makeshift hut in the Chadian border town of Tine, Monday, March 1, 2004, holding a 9mm pistol and a satellite phone. A year-long rebellion in western Sudan, which borders Chad, has forced more than 600,000 people to flee their homes in Sudan’s Darfur region. Two rebels groups, the Sudan Liberation Army and the Justice and Equality Movement say they are fighting for a greater share of wealth and power in Sudan. By Andrew England/AP Photo

N’Djamena, Chad Mar 13, 2004 (Sudan Tribune) — Chadian government has decided to redeploy the army throughout the Sudanese border to stop attacks on Sudanese refugees’ camps amid tension between the two countries, Sudan Tribune has learned.

Some 110,000 Sudanese refugees have been living in appalling conditions on the border since fleeing the Darfur region last spring. Thousands others moved across the border to save their lives from the Janjaweed/Sudanese army patrols.

The Chadian authorities accuse Sudan of stretching out civil war inside Chad against the Darfur rebels. The Sudanese militias Janjawid are carrying out daily raids on refugee camps in Chad. Overruling Sudanese security concerns, the Chadian authorities refused to release 50 Sudanese armed elements arrested inside Chad.

The Bashir government blockage of humanitarian aid to Western Sudan displaced people is seriously depleting economic sources of the hosting Chadian government. Khartoum, however, believes that rebels are now settled inside Chad and accuses Chadian army of supplying them with arms and logistics.

Recently, the Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir highly commended Chadian President Idris Deby, for continuous efforts to stop the escalated war of Western Sudan. Khartoum tendencies, however, to burden Chadian authorities with refugee humanitarian affairs while Sudanese army and Janjaweed militias pursue warring efforts in the region is largely inhibiting Chadian support to the Khartoum-planned Conference of Darfur.

The February 2004 massive attacks of Sudanese armed forces against Zagaoua rebel strongholds have decisively fuelled the armed conflict with renewable battlefields in northern Darfur: Chadian mediation for peace between Sudan warring parties is gradually diminishing to give way to mounting Sudanese-Chadian army hostilities.

Himself Zagaoua, President Deby maintains several high rank officers in his army who belong to a Sudanese Zagaoua branch. Chadian source said to ST "today they no longer obey him. As head of state, he has been trying to mediate; but I don’t think he will succeed because his relatives are stronger than him, and his army is full of Zagaoua."

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