Country Report on Terrorism 2013 - Chapter 2 - Chad

Overview: The Government of Chad was a strong counterterrorism partner in 2013 and is a member of the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP). Countering international terrorist threats to Chad were priorities at the highest levels of Chad’s government, with a particular focus on countering potential terrorist threats from across the Sahel region. Chad has a counterterrorism strategy, which focuses on promoting regional stability and securing its borders. The Chadian government strengthened border patrols along the border with Sudan and in the Lake Chad region.

The Chadian Army’s Special Antiterrorism Group (SATG), which has received U.S. training, has a national security mandate. The SATG is effective in counterterrorism operations with a specific focus on border security and interdiction of illicit goods trafficking, but faces a number of logistical challenges. In 2013, the SATG increased surveillance of the northern border with Libya and the unit was deployed to Mali and the Central African Republic.

Legislation, Law Enforcement, and Border Security: Chadian criminal law does not explicitly criminalize terrorism. However, certain general provisions of the Penal Code (1967) have been used to prosecute acts of terrorism. Chadian law enforcement has demonstrated a limited but effective capacity to detect, deter, and respond to potential terrorist incidents. Some Chadian units have limited investigations, crisis response, and border security capacity. Law enforcement units display basic command and control capacity. Specialized law enforcement units possess some necessary equipment but have many unfulfilled needs.

Border security is a common interest for the U.S. government and Chad. In 2013, Chad participated in the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) Sahel Cross-Border Workshop in Niamey.

In the law enforcement sector, the United States has provided Chad with training and technical assistance through the State Department’s Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA) program in the areas of building law enforcement border security, investigations, and crisis response capabilities. Chad also worked with the United States to reduce the threat from Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS) and other conventional weapons sought by terrorists.

Chad worked in collaboration with the U.S. government to implement biometric screening as part of the Terrorist Interdiction Program/Personal Identification Secure Comparison and Evaluation System (PISCES). In 2013, the United States, working with Chadian authorities, deployed the first state-of-the-art PISCES border security system at the N’Djamena airport, and expanded PISCES systems to additional Ports of Entry in late 2013.

In 2013, Chadian security forces executed several cordon and search operations in the Lake Chad region, extending south to the capital, in an effort to prevent spillover from ongoing security operations on the opposite side of Lake Chad undertaken by the Nigerian government directed against Boko Haram.

The Government of Chad also established the Antiterrorism Brigade in 2013, which has two permanent officers and borrows officers from the organized crime brigade as needed. The Chadian government is currently working with the governments of Sudan, Niger, Nigeria, Cameroon, and Libya to form border commissions and joint task forces to better control their borders. In particular, Chad works in cooperation with Sudan on a mixed-force border patrol, which has enabled the two countries to better monitor and control their joint border.

Countering the Financing of Terrorism: Chad is a member of the Action Group Against Money Laundering in Central Africa (GABAC), an observer to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) with the same mandate and status as a FATF-style regional body. GABAC works directly with Chad’s financial intelligence unit, the National Financial Investigative Agency (ANIF). ANIF is hindered by serious resource constraints, and law enforcement and customs officials need training in financial crimes enforcement.

Chad’s financial sector is underdeveloped and lacks sufficient capacity to enforce banking regulations. Financial intelligence reporting and analysis is limited. Additionally, law enforcement and customs officials require training in financial crimes enforcement. Several banks voluntarily report suspicious transactions, but the practice is not universal as there is no regulation requiring banks to report them. The national entity charged with monitoring money laundering is understaffed and lacks sophisticated equipment to perform its activities effectively. Although it maintains working relationships with commercial banks, it does not monitor wire transfers, SMS mobile money transfers, or other money transfer channels such as hawala brokers.

For further information on money laundering and financial crimes, see the 2014 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR), Volume 2, Money Laundering and Financial Crimes:

Regional and International Cooperation: Chad participated in the GCTF’s Sahel Region Capacity Building Working Group in October in Niamey, Niger. This included Chad serving on the committee that made recommendations to strengthen capacity building of member states, and the committee on securing land borders. Chad also participated in the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), providing 2,000 troops to assist French and Malian armed forces combat terrorists in northern Mali.

Chad supports counterterrorism capacity building in other states through the GCTF. In January, Chad sent 2,000 troops to participate in the Mali intervention to help French and Malian armed forces defeat a jihadist movement that occupied the northern region. Chad conducted counterterrorist operations including the killing of Abdelhamid Abou Zeid, a senior commander of al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). At year’s end, Chad was still participating in peacekeeping efforts in northern Mali, where it has deployed 1,200 troops.

Countering Radicalization to Violence and Violent Extremism: Chad participated in targeted projects to counter violent extremism through the TSCTP; specific activities have included building the capacity of national civil society organizations, community engagement, youth empowerment, promotion of interfaith dialogue and religious tolerance, and media and outreach work. President Deby instructs the High Council for Islamic Affairs to monitor religious activities closely in mosques to counter violent extremism and radicalization to violence.

In 2013, many of President Déby’s public addresses advocated for peaceful cohabitation and religious tolerance. For example, during speeches on the Muslim holidays of Eid al-Fitr (August 8) and Eid al-Adha (October 15), the president called for Chadians to reject violent Islamist extremism. Leaders from the country’s principal religious organizations uniformly supported the policies the president articulated.

Weekly community radio broadcasts, sponsored by the USAID-funded Peace through Development (PDev II) program, are aimed at countering violent extremism and encourage moderation, tolerance, and youth engagement. The Government of Chad fully endorses the program and was working to develop a strategy to take over ownership and ensure continuation of CVE broadcasts upon project completion in 2016.