French President Emmanuel Macron has “Reiterated its support for the transition” in Chad and promised “Soon, a new budget aid”, said the Elysee Palace Monday evening, after a meeting with the head of the military junta and self-proclaimed Chadian president, Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno, in Paris.
At the invitation of Emmanuel Macron, as part of the preparation for the next G5 Sahel summit, General Mahamat Idriss Déby “Made a first official working visit to France” Sunday and Monday, recall the two leaders in a “Joint press release”.
Also listen France and the Chadian trap
French President “Reiterated its support for the transition and announced the implementation, at an early date, of new budget aid”. The two leaders “Called for rapid treatment of the Chadian debt, within the common debt framework”. “They examined the progress of the political transition in Chad” and “Underlined the need to do everything possible to achieve the objectives of an inclusive, peaceful and successful transition”.
France “Recalled its attachment to the territorial integrity of Chad and its presence alongside the Chadian people in this sensitive period”. On the security front, Emmanuel Macron “Specified the objectives of the transformation of the French military system in the Sahel”.
An eighteen month transition
Mahamat Idriss Déby, 37, has been at the head of a Transitional Military Council (CMT) since the announcement, on April 20, of the death of his father, Idriss Déby Itno, who ruled the country with a iron for thirty years and was killed at the front against rebels.
As of April 20, the CMT dissolved the Parliament and the government and repealed the Constitution. He promised elections “Free and transparent” after a transition period of eighteen months renewable once.
The international community, the African Union (AU) and France in the lead have demanded that this period not exceed eighteen months. However, at the end of June, Mahamat Déby hinted that he was not ruling out an extension.
The Chadian army is one of the main pillars of the fight against jihadist groups in the Sahel. During Idriss Déby’s funeral, Mr. Macron was the only Western head of state to have gone to N’Djamena to pay tribute to the deceased and to meet his son and successor.
Mr. Macron recently announced an upcoming progressive military disengagement of France in the Sahel. The French anti-jihadist force “Barkhane” (5,100 men at present) will disappear in favor of a tightened device, focused on the fight against terrorism and support in the fight of local armies. A summit of the G5 Sahel (Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad), by videoconference, should take place on Friday with Emmanuel Macron.