Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Sudan 'is arming rebels' in Chad (BBC)

Oct 25 2006 BBC report - excerpt:
Sudan's government is arming rebels in Chad, the government has alleged amid reports that rebels are moving towards the Chadian capital, N'Djamena.

Chad's foreign minister said the proof was the firing of a missile at a French reconnaissance plane in the east.

The rebels began their offensive in the east at the weekend but are now said to be near the central town of Mongo.

A BBC correspondent in N'Djamena says tanks are stationed in key areas, such as outside the presidential palace.

Troops have been recalled to base despite the Muslim holiday of Eid - the biggest festival of the year in Chad.

The BBC's Stephanie Hancock in Chad says the outskirts of the capital are said to have been heavily fortified with government troops, but she says reports of the rebels' location are changing almost hour by hour.

Rapid advance

"These rebels entered Chad from Sudan and they could only have procured this type of military equipment within the sight of and with the knowledge of the Sudanese authorities. Sudan cannot deny it," Chadian Foreign Minister Ahmar Allami told AFP news agency.

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