Situation of members of the Movement for Democracy and Justice in Chad (MDJT) and of the people close to the late Youssouf Togoïme (family, friends, bodyguards), including their treatment by government authorities; the December 2003 peace accord signed by the government and the MDJT and its implementation by both parties (September 2002 - August 2005) [TCD100538.FE]

No information on the treatment of members of the Movement for Democracy and Justice in Chad (Mouvement pour la démocratie et la justice au Tchad, MDJT) or on the people close to the late Youssouf Togoïme could be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

However, sources indicated that after the death of leader Youssouf Togoïme in 2002, the MDJT was riddled with internal conflict (Nouveaux Mondes rebelles Jan. 2005, 174; AFP 18 Aug. 2005b; Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005) and weakened considerably (ibid.; Nouveaux Mondes rebelles Jan. 2005, 170). In describing the situation of the MDJT after the death of its leader, Les Nouveaux Mondes rebelles noted that the [translation] "orphaned" armed movement [translation] "was undermined by rallying round President Déby's regime, by divisiveness and by other paralysing manoeuvres, cunningly orchestrated by N'Djamena [capital of Chad] and Tripoli [capital of Libya]" (Jan. 2005, 170). The MDJT's military actions in the northern regions of Chad, particularly in Tibesti, have decreased significantly (Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005; see also Nouveaux Mondes rebelles Jan. 2005, 174). According to Les Nouveaux Mondes rebelles, the MDJT's membership, which once numbered 1,500 men, dropped to 200 men by the end of 2002 (Jan. 2005, 174; see also Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005).

In describing the split in the MDJT leadership, Les Nouveaux Mondes rebelles mentioned, on one side, Adoum Togoï, described as [translation] "the man for the Libyans," and, on the other side, many other leaders, including Hassan Mardigué and Youssouf Barkai, characterized as [translation] "invincible warlords ... loyal to Togoïmi's 'orthodox' line" (Jan. 2005, 174).

Corroborating sources reported that a peace accord was signed by the MDJT and the Chadian government (Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005; Reuters 19 Aug. 2005; AFP 18 Aug. 2005a.; ibid. 18 Aug. 2005b; RFI 19 Aug. 2005) on 18 August 2005 (ibid.). Signed by the Chadian minister of energy and mines, Youssouf Abassalah, and by the MDJT leader, Colonel Hassan Mardigué (AFP 18 Aug. 2005a; Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005; RFI 19 Aug. 2005), in the presence of a representative from the French embassy in Chad (ibid.; AFP 18 Aug. 2005a), the peace agreement's main objectives include suspending all military actions, reintegrating MDJT rebels into the Chadian national army and the public service (ibid. 18 Aug. 2005b; RFI 19 Aug. 2005; Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005), and freeing the prisoners held by both sides (ibid.; AFP 18 Aug. 2005a; ibid. 18 Aug. 2005b). Moreover, citing Brahim Chouma, the MDJT's foreign relations secretary, an AFP article reported that the accord "called for a general amnesty for supporters and sympathizers of the movement" (18 Aug. 2005a).

However, "Aboubakar Choua Dazi, who claims the contested leadership of the MDJT, ... categorically rejected the accord" signed on 18 August 2005 and vowed that his movement would continue the armed struggle (AFP 18 Aug. 2005a; see also Global Insight 19 Aug. 2005).

As to the December 2003 peace agreement, Africa Confidential indicated that General Adoum Togoï Abbo signed a peace accord in Burkina Faso with the Chadian government on 14 December 2003, and that the MDJT would "stop speaking with the language of weapons" (19 Dec. 2003, 5). On that same day, however, other members of the movement dissociated themselves from the accord, claiming that Adoum "spoke 'only for himself'" (Africa Confidential 19 Dec. 2003, 5). With regard to the 14 December 2003 accord mediated by Burkina Faso and supported by Libya, Les Nouveaux Mondes rebelles characterized it as a [translation] "rallying agreement" which permitted Adoum Togoï to re-enter N'Djamena (Jan. 2005, 174). Although it did not specifically refer to the accord signed on 14 December 2003, a Reuters report published on 19 August 2005 indicated that "a previous peace deal brokered by Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi failed to end hostilities" between the Chadian army and the MDJT.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References


Africa Confidential [London]. 19 December 2003. Vol. 44, No. 25. "Chad/Sudan: The Language of Weapons."

Agence France-Presse (AFP). 18 August 2005a. "Chadian Government, Rebel Group Sign Peace Accord, but Some Rebels Reject It." (Factiva)

_____. 18 August 2005b. "Chadian Government, Rebel Group Sign Peace Accord: Govt." (Factiva)

Global Insight Daily Analysis. 19 August 2005. Christopher Melville. "Regime Strikes New Deal with Northern Chadian Rebel Group" (Factiva)

Les Nouveaux Mondes rebelles: Conflits, terrorisme et contestations. January 2005. Edited by Jean-Marc Balencie and Arnaud de la Grange. Paris: Éditions Michalon.

Radio France Internationale (RFI) [Paris, in French]. 19 August 2005. "Chadian Government, Rebels Sign Peace Agreement." (BBC Monitoring/Factiva)

Reuters. 19 August 2005. Betel Miarom. "Chad Rebels Sign New Peace Deal With Government." (Factiva)

Additional Sources Consulted


Publications: Africa Research Bulletin, Jeune Afrique/L'Intelligent, Resource Centre country file.

Internet sites, including: AllAfrica, Amnesty International, BBC Africa, European Country of Origin Information Network (ECOI.net), Human Rights Watch (HRW), International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), IRIN, ReliefWeb, United States Department of State.