Chad Pushes Out ‘Enemy Forces’ in North After Heavy Fighting

(Bloomberg) -- Chad’s army dislodged what it described as enemy fighters from a town near its northern border with Libya after heavy fighting in a conflict the government has so far given few details about.

The central African nation’s announcement that the army was successful in fighting insurgents in the town of Miski came a week after President Idriss Deby replaced several key cabinet officials, including the defense minister. Fighting began three months ago following a deadly attack on army positions in the north by the rebel Military Command Council for the Salvation of the Republic, or CCSMR, which is reported to be backed by Libyan fighters.

After visiting the front-line in Miski, newly appointed Defense Minister Daoud Yaya Brahim spoke on state radio urging residents of the town to come toward the security forces so that the area can be searched.

“We’re in a position to search the area and occupy our territory,” Brahim said late Sunday. “We’re in Miski and we’re telling anyone who wants to hear it.”

Chad’s army command said last week in a statement that fighting was “exceptionally violent,” without giving details or a death toll. Military aircraft were used before sending in ground troops, leaving an unknown number of civilians dead, according to residents quoted by local media.

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