Twenty people were killed and nine seriously injured following heavy fighting in Guereda, Chad, International Medical Corps reported (via ReliefWeb
) July 5, 2006 - excerpt:
Gunshots were heard from Guereda at approximately 5:10 a.m. local time. After an initial investigation, it appeared that fighting was underway in Obe village, just over four miles from Guereda, between two ethnic groups, the Tamas and the Gorans. Previous fighting between the two tribes had left several killed and injured.
On the morning of July 4th, Gorans, heavily armed with machine guns and rocket launchers, surrounded the Tamas village of Obe and started shelling. The skirmish reportedly lasted for four hours. IMC suspended normal activities in the camps, allowing its staff to focus on the wounded. Creating three shifts for a 24-hour period, IMC and Guereda Hospital staff cared for the injured. Five of the more serious cases were flown to the hospital in Abeche.
IMC is keeping its team on alert for the coming night, as some of the wounded might be afraid to travel to the hospital during daylight hours. There are rumors that retaliation strikes may take place. IMC staff in Guereda say the situation between the Tamas and Gorans tribes - as well as between the Tamas and Zagawas tribes - is deteriorating. Open conflict among these groups threatens to destabilize ethnically diverse institutions, such as the police.