Armed ViolenceNews

Report Fingers Chadian Fighters As Mastermind Of Instability In Sahel, Libya

Fighters of Chadian origin have been fingered as the mastermind of the instability and insecurity in the Sahel while their presence in Libya is said to be responsible for the instability in that country.

According to a just published report of the Global Initiative Transnational Organised Crime, individual armed groups are most times the key to the upsurge in criminal economies which play an important role in the prolongation and aggravation of conflicts.

The document reports that in the Sahel, the proliferation of armed actors and their implication in the plethora of illicit markets in the sub region have contributed to the cyclic insecurity in the region.

“Chadian combatants have for a long time been the key actors within this constellation of armed groups in the Sahel,” the report pointed out, adding that the Libyan ceasefire of Oct. 23, 2020 between the government of national accord recognised by the United Nations in Tripoli and the Libyan Arab Forces was signed with one of the key elements being the departure of all mercenaries and foreign fighters from Libyan land air and sea territory.

More than one year later, most of the mercenary forces have remained in Libya and the Chadian actors have become the key forces engaged as mercenaries on both sides of the conflict.

The document stated that Libyan security forces have positioned themselves as the legitimate actors and the Libyan forces in Fezzan have decided to rid the zone of Chadian bandits.

The report noted that this would push these combatants to find new bases in the north of Niger and the north of Chad which “have for long seen the weak presence of the state as illustrated by the April 2021 incursion into Chad by the Front for Alternation and Concord in Chad, popularly known by the French acronym FACT, a rebel group founded in Libya in 2016”.

The report said that in Chad, the disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration (DDR) process has, to a large extent, failed, leading to a slow and authoritarian process.

“Right now, Chadian combatants who surrendered in March 2021 are still waiting for the beginning of the disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration process,” the report revealed.

To prevent all dangers of destabilisation of the countries in the Sahel, the report recommends that there should be a corridor to Chadian combatants so that they can return to the country. It said that authorities should prevent recruitment into armed groups and regularise the extraction economy and reinforce the capacities and the training of the regional security forces.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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