Herder-Farmer Clashes Leave 23 Dead In Chad

Chad’s President, General Mahamat Idriss Deby

At least 23 people were killed in late March skirmishes between herders and farmers in southern Chad, a region prone to similar land disputes, Chad’s communications minister told AFP on Monday.

According to the minister, Abdraman Koulamallah, the battle began on March 17 with the “assassination” of a nomadic Arab-speaking herder and raged in three villages in the southern fertile region of Moyen-Chari until March 21.

Relatives and clan members of the deceased, who live in the drier north of the country, launched a punitive expedition on the village they suspected was responsible for the ambush that killed him.

The minister stated that peace had returned Monday.

The seven-day battles, which spread to two other villages, claimed the lives of nine Arab shepherds and 14 Sara-Kaba residents, including four women and two children, according to Koulamallah.

He stated that 21 persons had been arrested, and that investigations were underway to identify the “authors, facilitators, and accomplices of these crimes.”

Clashes erupt frequently in eastern and southern Chad, where many inhabitants are armed, as sedentary farmers accuse herders of allowing animals to feed on their property or damage crops.

The majority of the unrest occurs in annual transhumance corridors, which include vegetation adequate for both crop production and cattle feeding.

Beyond Chad, such ancestral disputes have become more common in Sudan, South Sudan, the Central African Republic, Cameroon, and Nigeria, where fertile tropical regions meet the arid Sahel strip.



Written by PH

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