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Idriss Deby’s son takes over in Chad

Idriss Deby

Mahamat Kaka, a military general and son of slain Chadian leader Idriss Deby, has been named interim president of the country by a transitional council of military officers following the death of his father, military spokesperson Azem Bermendao Agouna said on state television Tuesday.

Kaka is to lead the country for the next 18 months and oversee “free, democratic and transparent elections”, Agouna said. He added that as leader of the transitional military council, Kaka is also “to assure the defence of our dear country facing this war against terrorism and evil forces.”

Deby’s death was announced a day after he was declared the winner of a presidential election that gave him a sixth term in office. Bermendao’s statement said Deby, who had visited troops on the frontline on Monday after rebels based across the northern frontier in Libya advanced hundreds of miles south toward the capital N’Djamena, was wounded during fighting and died after being evacuated to the capital city. He assured Chadians that the military council would do everything in its power to prevent the breakdown of law and order following Deby’s death.

“Marshal Idriss Deby Itno, as he did each time that the institutions of the republic were gravely threatened, took control of operations during the heroic combat led against the terrorists from Libya. He was wounded during the fighting and died once repatriated to N’Djamena,” Bermendao said.

“The National Council of Transition reassures the Chadian people that all measures have been taken to guarantee peace, security and the republican order,” Bermendao added. According to him, the government and National Assembly have been dissolved and a nationwide curfew imposed from 6 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Deby, 68, who came to power in a rebellion in 1990 and was one of Africa’s longest-ruling leaders, had pushed through a new constitution in 2018 that would have allowed him to stay in power until 2033.

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BREAKING: Chad’s President Idriss Deby killed in frontline clashes with rebels

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