Chad Deploys Troops Near Libya After Rebel Attack

(Bloomberg) -- Chad is reinforcing its military presence near the Libyan border to ward off any rebel incursions following a deadly attack on army positions in the area this month, according to two people familiar with the matter.

War planes have been deployed to the northern town of Faya-Largeau and large military convoys have been seen leaving the capital, N’Djamena, the people said, asking not to be identified because they’re not authorized to speak publicly.

Rebels killed three military officials in an attack on Kouri Bougoudi, 35 kilometers (22 miles) south of the Libyan border, on Aug 11. The assault was claimed by a formerly unknown group called the Military Command Council for the Salvation of the Republic, or CCSMR. The government has since ordered all artisanal gold miners to leave the north.

Since assuming office in 1990, President Idriss Deby has faced as many as five major insurgencies, including one that was instigated by an ex-defense minister. Deby rose to power by ousting his predecessor Hissene Habre, who two years ago was sentenced to life in prison by a special court in Senegal for committing crimes against humanity.

The government has the situation under control and any rumors of a rebel offensive are false, Public Security Minister Ahmat Bachir said on state radio late Wednesday.

Chad has helped counter militant groups linked to al-Qaeda and Islamic State in neighboring Libya, which slid into lawlessness since the 2011 uprising that toppled Muammar Qaddafi.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.