Saturday, February 2, 2008

Rebels in Chad Attempt to Oust President Idriss Deby

Hundreds of rebels charged into Chad's capital aboard pickup trucks Saturday, clashing with government troops around the presidential palace in the most forceful attempt yet to oust President Idriss Deby. The rebels claimed to gain strength from defecting soldiers in the oil-rich Central African nation.

The violence endangered a $300 million global aid operation supporting millions of people in the former French colony and also delayed the deployment of the European Union's peacekeeping mission to both Chad and neighboring Central African Republic.

The rebels arrived after a three-day push across the desert from the eastern border with Sudan in about 250 pickups with mounted submachine guns.

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