Home | News    Thursday 6 May 2004

Chadian army clashes with Sudanese militia, says Chad

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NAIROBI, May 6, 2004 (dpa) — The Chadian army has clashed with Arab militias backed by the Sudanese government inside Chad, news reports said Thursday.

"This clash is the consequence of multiple raids, frequent and repeated, by the Janjaweed in Chad", said Moctar Wawa Dahabune, spokesperson for Chad’s government, according to a report by the Catholic news agency MISNA.

According to the report, military sources said at least seven people, out of which six were civilian, had been killed and several others injured.

Dahabune said Chad urged Sudan’s government to control the militias so as not to compromise relations between the two countries.

The Darfur region in western Sudan, which borders Chad, has been the site of heavy clashes between nomadic groups of Arab descent and black African residents. The conflict over the area’s limited resources is one of the worst humanitarian disasters worldwide, according to the U.N.

Since the conflict began over a year ago, more than 1.2 million people have been affected. At least 750,000 are believed to be displaced within Darfur, while over 100,000 have fled over the border to Chad. At least 10,000 people are believed to have died.

A ceasefire agreement between the Sudanese government and the local Darfur rebel groups was signed in Chad in early April, but the truce has reportedly been broken on several occasions.

High-ranking U.N. and U.S officials have said that "ethnic cleansing" is taking place in Darfur.

On Friday two U.N. missions which recently visited Darfur are scheduled to address the Security Council on the human rights and humanitarian situation in the area.

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