Chad closes border with Libya over 'terrorist threat'

Tibesti desert border regions are sparsely populated but are used for dealing in contraband by those living on both sides of border.

Lawlessness reigns in swathes of Libya


2017-01-05 17:56:01




N'DJAMENA - Chad announced Thursday that it has closed its border with Libya due to the threat of a "potential terrorist infiltration" and is boosting its military presence in the region.

"Faced with the perils that threaten all of the nation's territory, the government decided for one thing to close our land border with Libya, and for another to declare the regions bordering Libya military operation zones," said Prime Minister Albert Pahimi Padacket in a message broadcast on radio and television.

The Tibesti desert border regions are sparsely populated but are used for dealing in contraband by those living on both sides of the border, mainly the ethnic Tubu people.

The premier explained that the measures were taken because "following their defeat, some isolated terrorist groups have gathered in the south of Libya, putting the northern frontier of our country potentially exposed to a serious threat of a terrorist infiltration."

He did not however provide information on the identity of these "terrorist groups" or what "defeat" they suffered in Libya.

The North African country has been mired in chaos since the 2011 downfall of longtime dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

Chad is seen as a key ally of the West in its fight against jihadists in Africa. President Idriss Deby Itno is supported by France and the United States, who need the cooperation of the Chadian military in the region.

The country is part of the regional alliance fighting Boko Haram Islamists who have spread their insurgency from northern Nigeria to the border regions of neighbouring Chad, Niger and Cameroon.


Editors' Picks

The Arab Weekly Newspaper reaches Western & Arabic audience that are influential as well as being affluent.

From Europe to the Middle East,and North America, The Arab Weekly talks to opinion formers and influential figures, providing insight and comment on national, international and regional news through the focus of Arabic countries and community.

Published by Al Arab Publishing House

Publisher and Group Executive Editor: Haitham El-Zobaidi, PhD

Editor-in-Chief: Oussama Romdhani

Deputy Editor-in-Chief: Dalal Saoud

Senior Editor: John Hendel

Chief Copy Editors: Jonathan Hemming and Richard Pretorius

Analysis Section Editor: Ed Blanche

Opinion Section Editor: Claude Salhani

East/West Section Editor: Mark Habeeb

Levant Section Editor: Jamal J. Halaby

Gulf Section Editor: Mohammed Alkhereiji

Society and Travel Sections Editor: Samar Kadi

Senior Correspondents:

Mahmud el-Shafey (London)

Lamine Ghanmi (Tunis)

Correspondents

Saad Guerraoui (Casablanca)

Dunia El-Zobeidi (London)

Roua Khlifi (Tunis)

Rasha Elass - Thomas Seibert (Washington)

Published by Al Arab Publishing House

Contact editor at:editor@thearabweekly.com

Subscription & Advertising: Ads@alarab.co.uk

Tel 020 3667 7249

Mohamed Al Mufti

Marketing & Advertising Manager

Tel (Main) +44 20 6702 3999

Direct: +44 20 8742 9262

www.alarab.co.uk

Al Arab Publishing House

Kensington Centre

66 Hammersmith Road

London W14 8UD, UK

Tel: (+44) 20 7602 3999

Fax: (+44) 20 7602 8778

Follow Us
© The Arab Weekly, All rights reserved