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Sudan Tribune

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Chadian army clashes with rebels near Sudan border

July 3, 2006 (N’DJAMENA) — Chadian rebels attacked an eastern town near the border with Sudan on Monday but the government said its soldiers had put down the assault, killing several insurgents and taking a number of prisoners.

Chadian_rebels_.jpgIn turn, the rebels said they had entered the town of Ade and claimed victory for their fighters, saying they were chasing off fleeing remnants of the government force. It was not immediately possible to verify either version of events.

“The Chadian army is chasing some of the survivors in their disarray towards the Sudanese border,” Chadian Communications Minister Hourmadji Moussa Doumgor said in a statement.

“The death toll from this suicidal attack by mercenaries will be known shortly but already the attackers have several dead and several of them have been taken prisoner.”

Residents have deserted dozens of villages along Chad’s desolate frontier with Sudan’s Darfur region amid cross-border raids by Arab Janjaweed militia and their sympathisers, thought to include rebels fighting to oust Chad’s President Idriss Deby.

Deby accuses Sudan’s President Omar Hassan al-Bashir of backing the eastern-based rebels, some of whom appear to have been joining in Janjaweed attacks, according to residents and aid workers.

“After violent clashes, forces under the command of Colonel Mahamat Hassane Al-inghaz have just entered the town of Ade,” Albissaty Saleh Allazam, spokesman for the United Front for Democratic Change (FUC), told Reuters.

“These forces … are chasing government troops who are fleeing,” he said.

Ade lies some 750 km (470 miles) east of the capital N’Djamena.

The FUC launched an assault on N’Djamena in April in which hundreds of people were killed, just three weeks before an election which handed Deby a fresh five-year term in the arid, landlocked former French colony.

(Rreuters)

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