Chad: 'Are we Citizens of this Country?', Civilians in Chad Unprotected from Janjawid Attacks
|Publication Date||29 January 2007|
|Citation / Document Symbol||AFR 20/001/2007|
|Cite as||Amnesty International, Chad: 'Are we Citizens of this Country?', Civilians in Chad Unprotected from Janjawid Attacks, 29 January 2007, AFR 20/001/2007, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/45ed62242.html [accessed 25 November 2015]|
"Every time there was an attack we begged and pleaded for the military to come and help us. They were only 2 kilometres away. They never came. Other times they had fancy words for us and would tell us: 'We are with you. We will protect you.' But words are not enough ... We are not considered citizens of this country. They want us to die."
"We were all still tied with our arms behind our backs. A man in green uniform came and shot the men one by one along the line in the head. One bullet did not work and so he used a stick and smashed the head of the man ... They were all killed. I still have nightmares about it."
"They then grabbed my half-sister who was only 10 years old ... I saw two of them lie with my half-sister and then they went away. When we got there she was very hurt and was bleeding. She continued to bleed for the following two days and then she died."
"So many of them were dressed in Sudanese uniform, and they fought like an army, not a bunch of crazy villagers. Who taught them to fight like that? ... I think there is only one answer. The Sudanese army trained them, clothed them, and gave them their guns. That is why the Janjawid keep saying that this fighting is all about creating the New Sudan."
Homes ablaze. Villagers slaughtered. Women and girls raped. Survivors scattered in terror. Civilians in eastern Chad are sharing the cruel fate of their neighbours in Darfur, hostages to Sudan's ruthless solution to rebel attacks in the region. The Janjawid militias who in recent years have laid to waste vast areas of western Sudan, form the backbone of the armed groups who are killing, tormenting and displacing civilians from targeted ethnic groups such as the Dajo and the Masalit in eastern Chad. The aim of the attacks appears to be to clear vast areas of communities primarily identified by the Janjawid as "African" rather than "Arab", and to drive them further from the border with Sudan.1
In Darfur, since 2003, the Sudanese government continues to use its proxy militia, the Janjawid to terrorize, kill and forcibly displace civilians perceived to be the support base of the armed opposition movements. The government funds and arms the Janjawid, who are notorious for their cruelty and ferocity. Janjawid operations, in coordination with the Sudanese army and air force, deliberately target and attack particular ethnic groups and drive them from their villages. These attacks continue notwithstanding the presence of African Union peacekeeping troops. The result, there are over 2 million internally displaced people (IDP) in Darfur and 218,000 Darfuris live wretched existences as refugees in camps in eastern Chad.
Now, in eastern Chad too, a similar dynamic is evolving. Sudanese Janjawid and their local Chadian allies are plundering and killing with impunity. There are over 90 000 internally displaced people sheltering in settlements in eastern Chad and at least 15,000 who have fled Chad for the fragile safety of refugee camps in Darfur. Amnesty International found on two visits to the Dar Silah region in May and in November/December 2006 that targeted ethnic groups have been dispersed by repeated cross-border attacks since 2005. Attacks on Chadian civilians have increased as relations between Chad and Sudan worsen, armed Chadian opposition groups become more active, and Darfuri armed opposition groups increase their presence in Chad. Both the Sudan and Chad governments are taking advantage of conflict between different ethnic Chadian communities over access to land, water, livestock and other resources by arming them and using them to attack targeted civilian groups. However, generally groups perceived as "African" remain disproportionately affected by the violence.
This report documents evidence of the deliberate and targeted killing of communities, the rape and other crimes of violence against women, and the destruction of homes and civilian property in eastern Chad. Amnesty International's research focused on the Dar Silah region but Amnesty International is concerned that such human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law have been committed throughout eastern Chad. Amnesty International's research strongly suggests that killings, rape and forced displacement have been committed in a systematic and widespread manner and that crimes against humanity have been committed. In some cases such acts have constituted war crimes.
The government of Chad, in the face of such atrocities committed on its soil, has failed to protect the civilian population from Janjawid attacks. Officials have admitted as much to Amnesty International. By withdrawing and withholding troops from the Chad/Sudan border to fortify its positions against attacks from Chadian rebels, the Chad government left the civilian population unprotected from Janjawid and Chadian rebel attacks. The security vacuum created is leading to increased militarization as communities arm and form community defence militias. Amnesty International understands that urgent pleas by local authorities for the deployment of government forces to protect civilians under attack have often been rebuffed by army commanders whose forces are often only a short distance away.
Chad has ratified virtually every international human rights treaty.2 Its constitution and domestic laws guarantee basic human rights, including the right to life, health and security of the person. The government must urgently confront the human rights crisis in Dar Silah region and other parts of eastern Chad, by deploying forces or requesting international assistance.
The international community has a crucial role to play. The UN Security Council must work with the government of Chad to protect the civilian population in Eastern Chad, including through the deployment of an international force along the border. The international community must ensure that the International Criminal Court (ICC) investigates crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in eastern Chad.
1. The perpetrators
Overwhelmingly, the attacks on civilians in Chad have been carried out by a loose coalition, based on common ethnicity, of Sudan government-backed militia who cross over from Darfur and local Chadian Arab groups. They are frequently joined by Chadian African ethnic groups such as the Mimi and Wadai, who live among the Dajo and other groups targeted for attack. Attackers from this alliance are invariably termed Janjawid by the survivors. Unless otherwise specified, the term Janjawid is used in this report to refer to this loose coalition.
There has also been fighting in eastern Chad in recent years between the Chadian military and armed groups opposed to the Chadian government. Many of the Chadian armed opposition groups have bases in Sudan and receive arms from the government of Sudan. In November 2006, for example, one Chadian armed group attacked and held the eastern city of Abeche for close to 24 hours. The conflict between the Chadian military and the armed opposition groups has resulted in human rights violations. However this report focuses on the predominant crisis caused by Janjawid incursions into eastern Chad. The human rights and humanitarian crisis that has defined Darfur is spilling over into, and being repeated in Eastern Chad. As in Darfur, the Janjawid militia perpetrate the most heinous human rights abuses against the civilian population with impunity.
The Janjawid and their allies
- The Sudanese Janjawid who attack villages in Chad appear to be a mixture of more formal forces and other community based militia. The more formal forces are most often, but not exclusively, incorporated into Sudanese paramilitary forces, such as the Popular Defence Force (Quwwat difa' al-sha'bi) and the Border Intelligence Guard (Haras mukhabarat al-hudud), and receive a monthly salary as well as arms. Amnesty International researchers were given identity cards found on the bodies of Janjawid killed in Chad showing their membership of such paramilitary groups. The other, more informal, Janjawid forces are not incorporated into Sudanese government forces but may remain under their tribal commander (aqid) or be armed and mustered, usually under well-known Janjawid leaders, for specific occasions.
- Chadian Arab groups: To distinguish between Chadian and Sudanese Janjawid is difficult because of the fluid relations between kinsmen across the border, and the presence over a long period of Chadian Arabs in Darfur. The Chadian Arabs do not subscribe to the national border, and can easily be considered Sudanese to the extent that their migratory routes allow them to spend long periods in West Darfur or further north. Thus, as throughout most of Darfur, the link between Arabs, especially those of West Darfur, many originally Chadian, and Dar Silah Arabs, is inviolate. Their kinship and ethnic ties serve as a basis for alliance. Whether they ally with the Janjawid or remain independent, no Arab village in Chad is known to have been attacked by the Janjawid. As in Darfur, Janjawid attacks in Chad appear to be motivated by prospects of pillage, expansion of their access to land and resources, and more recently the presence of the Darfur armed opposition groups who they perceive as a threat. As in Darfur, racism is manipulated as a mobilizing force and racist language is used during most of the attacks.
- The Wadai, the Mimi and other groups, some of which align and join forces with the Janjawid, are all regarded as relative newcomers to Dar Silah and Dar Masalit, having mostly arrived after the 1984 famine.3 Such relative newcomers who tend also to be smaller and weaker communities are reported to ally themselves with the Janjawid in order to seek betterment of their lot through the conflict. In the short term their villages are spared and they have gained through pillage, but in the long term, as non-Arabs, they may also be targeted, as members of their communities have already been in the Tissi area, south of Dar Silah.
The forces opposing the Janjawid
The local people, primarily the Dajo who have suffered most from the attacks in the Dar Silah area are mostly armed with spears and bows and arrows.4 Only a very few have guns.
The Sudanese armed opposition groups in eastern Chad, the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), often share kinship with the targeted Chad groups such as the Masalit and the Dajo. The armed movements and the civilian population see the current conflict as pitting Africans against Arabs. In this context, Africans are perceived as supporting the SLA and JEM. In addition, the rebel presence in the area appears to be a motive for the government of Sudan to clear eastern Chad of people whom it perceives as supporting – or constituting a potential support base for – Sudanese armed groups. The Chad government's failure to protect civilians in eastern Chad risks increasing further militarization and arms proliferation in the region as the civilians – with no other protection – arm and defend themselves.
2. Deliberate and targeted killings
In November and December 2006, Amnesty International delegates witnessed an escalation in the number and the brutality of the attacks on the civilian population in Dar Silah. Survivors said Janjawid fighters made it clear that their intent was to target the Dajo, yelling out threats such as "Attack the slaves." "Hunt the Nuba [used to mean African and as a term of abuse]." "Kill them, exterminate them," and "We'll chase you from here and leave you with nowhere to go."
The Dajo community and other African populations in the region have been singled out for attack and have paid a heavy price.5 All along the Sudanese border south of Adre, Janjawid militias have been attacking and destroying villages and clearing the land of African communities.
Amnesty International recorded more than 500 names of individual civilians killed between August and November 2006. Most died from gunshot wounds during attacks. Many were killed in Janjawid ambushes in fields and on pathways outside villages. Some were captured and then summarily executed. The overwhelming majority were men, usually between the ages of 20 and 50, reportedly killed while attempting to defend their villages.
In some cases villages have had some advance warning of attacks, even if only of one or two hours. That has provided time to evacuate women, children and the elderly. Those left to defend the village have in most instances been overrun by the Janjawid attackers, who are heavily armed with a range of weapons including Kalashnikov and M-14 rifles. Villagers have had only bows and poisoned arrows, spears and machetes, and very few firearms with which to defend themselves.
The following eyewitness account from a 14-year-old girl describes the summary killing by Janjawid of 19 men outside the village of Wiririké on 11 October 2006.
"It was about midday and I was going back to the village when three men on horseback chased me and captured me. They hit me and tied my two arms behind me with rope and put a rope around my neck and made me run with them. They also captured my uncle. They had beaten him badly and he was bleeding around the head. He was also tied with his arms behind his back and a rope around his neck. They then walked us towards the Wadai village of Wiririké and took us to the fields just outside.
"There were 19 men with their arms tied behind their backs. There were maybe 50 or so armed men. Many were wearing green uniforms. They were insulting us and asking us where the men were hidden, that we had to tell them. We didn't know and so they told us that they would kill us. They told us to say the Shuhada, the last prayer, before we would die. They argued amongst themselves about what to do with us and then it was decided that one would go to see how many of them had been killed in the attack on Hilele that day.
"When the man who had gone to Hilele came back, he said that there had been lots of them killed. After that they said that they would kill us. It was dark and we were all lying down after last prayer. We were all still tied with our arms behind our backs. A man in green uniform came and shot the men one by one along the line in the head. One bullet did not work and so he used a stick and smashed the head of the man until he was dead. They were all killed. I still have nightmares about it – I think about it a lot. Once they had killed them they told me that I had to stay where I was while they threw the bodies away. They attached the bodies to the horses; some were dragged behind as they went to throw the bodies away. Men were left to guard me. When they came back the man who had killed the others wanted to kill me but one of the others said that they should not kill a woman. Another said that he would take me back with him to work in the fields. In the end they let me go and I ran back to the village of Mamadengue."
Another witness described the brutal killing of five villagers from Koloy on 17 September 2006 following one of several Janjawid attacks on the village.
"Five people who tried to run away were captured by the Janjawid. They bound their hands and then tied a cord around their necks. They then tied the rope from their necks to their horses and then rode their horses back and forth dragging their bodies for about five or 10 minutes. Blood was pouring out of their mouths and noses. They even whipped them on their heads and bodies with their reins, until they were completely covered with blood. Those people did not survive that torture."
In some instances, victims who were too young or too infirm to move were trapped and died when their huts were set alight. This happened during the attack on Djorlo on 7 November 2006. One paralysed man, Yahya Omar, aged about 70, was burnt to death inside his hut. Three children under four years of age died when the huts they were sleeping in were burnt down. One of them was Moussa Matar Adam, as his mother Khadidja Matar described.
"When the Janjawid came, my husband had already fled; I was alone with the six children. I was able to get five of them to safety and I came to look for the last, aged four, but I was too late. He had already died in the fire, his body was blackened."
Abakar Yussuf described the death of his wife, Kaltuma Mahamat, whose body was burned in their hut after she was summarily shot during an attack on Koloy on 11 November 2006.
"On the day of the attack we had gone to the fields very early and then we returned for our meal. When my wife saw that we were being attacked she told me that I should hide because they would kill me but they would not hurt her. I tried to make her run but she would not. I went and hid nearby. I saw two men in green uniforms enter my house. I heard them shout and tell her to get out. When she came out they shot her in the back and she fell to the ground and died. They then took her by her feet and pulled her back into the house and set fire to it. When I was able to get close the fire was very strong and so I went away. When I returned to find my wife's body, all that was left were her bones."
Abdoulaye Khamis told Amnesty International of his efforts to save his elderly brother, who was burned alive during a 15 November attack on Koloy.
"I was busy trying to help defend the village. My brother Hassan Bechir was 80 years old and crippled. He could not move around on his own. During the attack the Janjawid came upon him and started to beat him with sticks until he was senseless and they then threw him into a burning hut. My wife was there at the time. She came running to where I was to tell me what happened. I ran back with her and tried to save my brother. I pulled his body out of the burning hut, but I was too late."
3. Rape and other violence against women
Pervasive insecurity throughout eastern Chad has had severe consequences for women. Women have been among those killed in attacks. Frequently women are raped during Janjawid attacks or are abducted and subjected to sexual enslavement. Women are particularly vulnerable when they are outside the fragile safety of their village or settlement; for instance when they are travelling, working in the fields or gathering firewood. These are deliberate acts of war aimed at humiliating and instilling fear in the communities under attack, thus discouraging them from leaving the shelter of settlements or trying to return home, and ultimately at forcing them from their land.6
The Chadian government has made no effort to investigate the extent of violence against women, or to provide appropriate health and social services to women who have experienced rape and other violence. The government has also failed to put in place adequate security measures aimed at reducing the incidence of such attacks.
In addition to the violent nature of these attacks, many women have been left psychologically traumatised. The situation is exacerbated by acute material difficulties, particularly for women whose male relatives have been killed in attacks and who have been left destitute in a society in which lone women face enormous obstacles in supporting themselves and their children.
During attacks on villages
Although more men than women have been killed by Janjawid during attacks on villages in eastern Chad, as in Darfur, there are indications that sexual violence against women is on the increase. Amnesty International has documented a number of rapes and other abuses against women during attacks. Owing to the stigma attached to rape most women who have been subjected to sexual assaults usually deny the attacks. The practice of evacuating women and children from villages when villagers suspect that an attack is impending appears to have shielded some women from some of the abhorrent excesses of Janjawid attacks.
Seven women were abducted during an attack on the village of Djimezé Djarma on 7 October 2006. Amnesty International interviewed one of the women, who was still visibly traumatized and reluctant to speak of anything that might identify her attackers. She indicated that she and her three young children, and six other women and their children, were abducted during the attack and held for 20 days by 10 men, who travelled on horse and camel back. After their capture, the women and children were forced to walk for two or three days.
"The women were separated a bit and the men made us cook, fetch water, feed their camels and horses, and cook food for them. They would move between us and if we disobeyed they would beat us with their whips. We suffered a lot. I thought that I would be killed. I myself was not used by them as a woman but it is very possible that other women were but I did not see it. We did not talk about this when we escaped, it is a big taboo... Some of the women did say what pain they were in all over their bodies but this is also because of the beatings. They would beat us with their whips, sticks, anything that they could find to use."
Women from among a group of seven who were raped outside the mosque where they had taken refuge during an attack on the village of Djorlo on 7 November 2006 were interviewed by Amnesty International. One of the women said:
"Women went to hide in the mosque, but then a man in green uniform came into the mosque and saw us. We were seven women and we had children with us. He shouted that there were more over here and we could hear them discussing what they should do. We heard them decide to open fire on the mosque and so we decided to run out. We ran out of the front of the mosque ... They captured the women and threw the children on the ground and then used the women. I had been in the mosque and I saw what happened. I could see that other women were having the children on their backs taken and they were being thrown on the ground.
"The women were being beaten and also pushed to the ground. The men were holding their throats and sitting on their bodies so they could not move, and they took off their clothes and then used them as women. More than one man would use one woman. I could hear the women crying for help, but there was no one to help them. If the women managed to get up and run another man would catch her trying to leave and bring her back and use her.
"A man got hold of me and threw the child I was carrying on the ground. He then pushed me to the ground and took me by the throat. This hurt me a lot because I have a goitre on my throat; my neck has swollen up some more since then. The man put his weight on my body and I could not move ... afterwards I bled for six days. Eventually there were reinforcements from nearby villages who came and the attackers fled. I still see what happened there at night when I sleep. We all do... We cannot speak of what happened. It is taboo."
Another witness to the rapes in Djorlo added that:
"They put guns to the heads of some of the women. Three of them would take a woman, one man holding her arms, the other her legs and the third would use her. They were shouting things like 'Dajo slaves, we will chase you and kill your children. Your village will be for our herd."
Women have also been tortured and physically abused during village attacks and abductions, as one woman beaten during an attack on the village of Tieraborga on 4 November 2006 told Amnesty International.
"I was in the fields with my husband when we heard shots. When my husband heard the shots he ran to the village and told me to stay where I was. Shortly after he left, though, I ran after him. I saw him injured on the floor and I ran to him. I put myself on top of him to protect him because he is my husband. One of the attackers said 'You want your husband, but you are our slaves and we will kill you,' but another said 'You will stay with us and you will come and work for our wives.' He put a cord around my neck and the other hit me in the kidneys with the butt of the gun. A third man hit me on my shoulder. They then tried to put me on the horse but I was very weak – I was [five months] pregnant – and I fell to the ground. They left me there and cut the cord and went away."
Many women have experienced the hardship and deprivation of trying to support families after losing their male relatives and being forcibly driven from their homes. In the attack on the village of Djorlo on 7 November 2006, for instance, 40 men were killed, leaving 52 widows and 166 children without their fathers.
Marioma Mahat, whose husband, an imam, was killed during an attack on the village of Tamadjour on 8 November 2006, described to Amnesty International the impact of becoming a widow.
"I have eight children; I have full responsibility for them now. Everybody is suffering and has nothing. There is no one who can also take responsibility for us. My brother [in-law] has many children and has nothing. After four months and 10 days [mourning period], I can try to find a husband but if I cannot find anyone then I will have to work to provide for my children, working for others in the fields or in domestic work."
In camps for the displaced
As in Darfur, there are frequent attacks on women who venture outside sites where people forcibly displaced from villages have gathered for safety or have been offered refuge by another community. The lawlessness and lack of protection for civilians in eastern Chad have made the rape of displaced women working in the fields, gathering firewood or collecting water commonplace.
In attacks on villages, belongings and food stores are either burned or pillaged, leaving families with no food and without the means to support themselves. The displaced are forced to leave their homes with few belongings, and it is women who overwhelmingly carry the burden of providing for their family, whether by looking for firewood to sell or to use, or working as paid field labourers. The Chad government and the international community continue to fail internally displaced people living in informal settlements by not providing them with humanitarian food assistance. Even for those who have moved to officially recognized sites, such as the Habile site outside Koukou Angarana and the Gouroukoun site outside Goz Beida, food aid is infrequent and irregular. It falls to women to find the means to feed and support their families, meaning they leave settlements early in the morning and return in the late afternoon. By necessity, women venture far from the temporary settlements and face repeated violence at the hands of those who have chased them from their villages.
At every displacement site visited by Amnesty International, women and men described frequent attacks on women when they ventured outside. Although usually described as beatings, many women indicated that it was not possible for women to admit they had been raped for fear of social repercussions. In particular, it was emphasized that the shame for young girls not yet married was particularly strong. Amnesty International has gathered several eyewitness testimonies of sexual violence, which corroborate other second-hand accounts and strongly suggest that many beatings also involved sexual violence.
A woman from Koloy described being raped outside the Gouroukoun displacement site.
"When we arrived in Goz Beida, at Gouroukoun camp, the UN Refugee Agency [UNHCR] gave us tents and three koros [about six litres of grain] for each person, even children. This was in March . This was only one time though, and afterwards we did not have anything else to eat. So the women had to go and look for wood [approximately 10km from the camp] to sell in the market. I would go with my youngest daughter tied to my back [five months old in November 2006]. On the 20th day of Ramadan this year [13 October 2006], as I was looking for wood with two other women, we came across five armed men. Three were wearing white and two were in green uniforms. They asked us where we came from and we told them from Goz Beida. They asked us again where we came from and who we were, whether we were displaced or refugees. When we said displaced, they said that we were the ones they had been looking for. They said: 'You think you can hide at Goz Beida, but there is no key that can protect you – we do not want you to stay there.' They started to beat us and took our head scarves and sandals. Then they grabbed me and took me away from the two old women I was with; they managed to run away.
"First they took my child from me and threw her on the ground. Then two of the men raped me. Afterwards they left and I picked up my daughter and came back to the camp. I have not told anyone what happened to me. If others knew, it could bring me problems with my husband. I do not know how my husband would react if he were to know. Men are different and some get angry with the woman. Afterwards I hurt all over, but I am feeling better now."
Another girl described the rape of displaced women who had gone with their families to Koloy to seek a place of safety after their village had been attacked in March 2006.
"Koloy itself has been attacked a few times. While there, because we had nothing we had to go looking for wood. We would meet men in jellabiyas or green uniforms quite often, and they would insult us and hit us. I also one time met Arab women and they started to shout and dance, and so we were afraid and we ran away. One time after Ramadan I was with two cousins and we were looking for firewood when we came across five armed men on horseback in green uniforms. We started running and they came after us. I heard them say that I was too young. I am one or two years younger than my cousins, but they took my cousins. They also said 'You the Nubas cannot do anything. We have the power and we are going to chase you from the land.' They took my cousins into the bush. I went back to Koloy and it was only the next morning that my cousins returned. Their clothes were soaked with blood but they were scared to talk to people because it was a big shame. I knew that they had been raped and their mothers looked after them, washing them with hot water and water boiled with bark from trees."
Internally displaced people not living in official camps cannot access appropriate medical services after falling victim to sexual violence.7 In addition to the taboo against speaking of such assaults, health risks for women are compounded by female genital mutilation through infibulation, practised almost without exception in the Dar Silah region on girls between 7 and 10 years old.8 This increases the severity of injuries incurred during rape. Girls and young women who have not yet given birth are particularly at risk from the reopening of wounds and severe blood loss. Some survivors of rape in Darfur have developed fistula, and it is likely that there are many unrecorded cases in Chad of this painful condition.
A displaced woman at Gouroukoun displacement site described the rape and subsequent death of a 10-year-old girl on the way to Modaina in March 2006.
"We left the village and went to Koloy hoping to be safe there. In March we decided to try to go back to the village to see if we could gather our belongings. There were 10 women in a line walking from Koloy to Modaina. It takes five hours. After three hours along the road we came across six men on camels, in green uniforms and armed. They beat us and told us: 'You blacks are not going to stay here. We will finish you all.' They then grabbed my half sister who was only 10 years old. The rest of us ran away and waited a short distance from them. Two of them lay with my half sister and then they went away. When we got there she was very hurt and was bleeding. She continued to bleed for the following two days and then she died. We left for Goz Beida immediately after this."
In Dog Doré, the wife of a chief of a village that was attacked and deserted described an attack in mid-November 2006.
"Two weeks ago I went to collect the tomatoes from my husband's fields. He had to get straw to repair the house and had said that he would come with me the next day, but I said I would go on my own. I left in the morning and had spent half the day there when a man on a camel came towards me. He asked me what I was doing and I said that I was harvesting tomatoes. He said that he wanted some and I agreed that I could sell some. He got off the camel and the camel sat on its knees. He then told me to come towards him. I refused. He again told me to come towards him. I again refused saying that he was here to buy tomatoes. He said that he was not interested in tomatoes, that he wanted to lie with me. I refused, saying that he could kill me if he wanted and I would not move. Then he came towards me and used a stick to hit me on the side of my neck and on my arm. I fell to the ground and he told me to sit up. When I sat up he kicked me in the side of my face and I fell down again. He told me to sit up and again he kicked me on the other side. I fell down again, and he kicked me and hit me with the butt of his rifle and used the stick to beat me. He then left. While he was beating me he was calling me a dog and said 'we will see.' He was dressed in a green uniform with a black turban. I think he was a local Arab. I would recognize him again if I saw him. I was unable to get up and was lying on the ground. Luckily a woman came by with her donkey and put me on it and brought me back. I was in bed for 10 days. I was four months pregnant when I was beaten and I have not felt the child move since then and I am worried. My arm still hurts. So does my shoulder."
A young woman at a site for displaced people outside the village of Maraina described how commonplace rape has become, and how difficult it is to discuss.
"The day before yesterday I returned to the fields with my mother and two children; it is a two-and-a-half hour walk. While we were there I saw five men on horseback in the distance, and so I ran and hid in the long grass. They caught up with my mother and beat her ... I have heard that young girls and women have been raped. No one talks about it directly because it is a big shame, especially for young girls who are not married. The last time I heard women speaking about this was concerning an attack two weeks ago and that two young girls were raped. It is impossible to ask for help because you cannot admit to being raped, but the female relatives help and will wash them with hot water or help them with traditional medicine, boiled bark from the trees. I heard that the attackers tell them not to tell their husbands and that the next time they see the women they will beat them to see if they have told their husbands."
4. Destruction and displacement
The destruction of villages and food crops appears to be aimed at depopulating the area so that the Janjawid and their allies can take control of the vacated land. The people they displace struggle to survive and are prevented from returning to their homes by patrolling gunmen.
Entire villages, substantial parts of villages and homes have been destroyed in attacks by the Janjawid and their allies. Many villagers described Janjawid fighters using incendiary weapons and huts bursting into flames when fired at. Livestock, household belongings and supplies of millet, beans and other food staples have been destroyed or looted. Often, fields in and around villages have also been set on fire, destroying crops which were ready for harvesting.
Amnesty International visited the village of Djorlo, now completely abandoned. A large part was burned down during an attack on 7 November 2006. The villagers are presently settled in precarious conditions on an unofficial site near the airstrip outside Goz Beida. They took some belongings when they fled, but much was destroyed during the attack or left behind in the panic of fleeing, or has been looted since.
As in Darfur, the Janjawid attacks in eastern Chad are invariably accompanied by the systematic theft of livestock, such as cattle, goats, horses, donkeys and sheep. The numbers of animals stolen are significant, often amounting to a village's entire herd of animals. Khamis Saleh, chief of the village of Khas-Khasha, estimated his village had lost 30 horses, 5,000 goats and 2,000 donkeys when attacked on 10 October 2006. Ibrahim Abdoulaye Ahmat, chief of the village of Dabkar,
estimated the theft of 1,300 cattle, 3,500 goats, 170 donkeys and 50 horses in an attack on his village the same day. Losses of this scale are immense for small villages, as the livestock are integral to daily life, including for transportation and as a source of food.
The combined effect of the destruction of homes, burning of fields, looting of belongings and loss of food supplies and livestock leaves villagers without means of survival. Attacks on civilian property, including the wanton destruction of property not justified by absolute military necessity, and the destruction or removal of crops and livestock which are indispensable for the survival of the civilian population are prohibited under international law and amount to war crimes.9 Pillage is also prohibited under international humanitarian law and constitutes a war crime.10
Targeted ethnic groups such as the Dajo and the Mouro are being forced from their homes and their land. Each new round of attacks leads to several thousand more people being displaced. It is currently estimated that 100,000 Chadians have been displaced as a result of attacks over the past year, 30,000 of them during attacks in October and November 2006.11
Many people have been displaced two or three times, constantly having to flee new attacks. Around the village of Koloy, for instance, small, outlying villages were attacked and villagers fled to neighbouring villages in late 2005 and early 2006. As those villages were in turn attacked, people fled to the main village of Koloy for safety. When Koloy was attacked in April and in the first two weeks of November 2006, they had to flee again.
Isshak Mahamat described to Amnesty International how he escaped from his village of Djedide when it was attacked in February 2006. He went to Damaré, south of Koloy, and fled again when it was attacked in March. At that time he and his family went to the village of Koloy, and lived there with several thousand other people displaced from villages in the surrounding area. He remained in Koloy through initial attacks on the village in early November, but fled following a massive Janjawid assault on 15 November 2006. He is now living at a site for displaced people outside the village of Adé, with his wife and seven children.
The threats made to villagers who try to return to their homes demonstrate the clear intent to keep them from returning to their land. Villagers who have attempted to return to their villages, even just to see if any crops remain, have often been threatened or attacked. Adam Gamar's 10 children returned to their fields outside the village of Matabono, near Koloy, on 21 November 2006. They were immediately accosted by a Janjawid group, made up primarily of local Mimi and Wadai. Adam Gamar's 17-year-old daughter, Fatuma Daoud, was beaten but was able to escape with her brothers and sisters. They were, however, not able to harvest any of their crops.
Internally displaced Chadians live in very difficult, dangerous and harsh conditions. Officially recognized sites, such as the Habile site outside Koukou Angarana and the Gouroukoun site outside Goz Beida, are located near camps for refugees from Darfur. Many other displaced Chadians, however, have settled in self-selected sites, in some cases fearful that the size of the larger settlements and their proximity to centres of population will lead to social problems.
Villagers who fled from Djorlo, for example, have settled on a site some 45km north, outside the village of Goz Beida. They have refused requests from UN and government officials to move to Gouroukoun, the official displacement site in the area. Coming from a small, relatively isolated village, they are concerned that living at Gouroukoun might expose their children to undesirable influences and make it difficult to maintain the rural existence they are used to. However, they have been told they will only be eligible for UN food assistance if they move to a larger site. Groups of men have travelled back to Djorlo to see if any crops or food can be recovered, despite the dangers posed by patrolling Janjawid fighters. Adeye Hassan and five other young men returned on 19 November 2006, only to be forced to flee when they came under fire from gunmen hiding in the trees.
Overwhelmingly, displaced Chadians told Amnesty International that they have two preoccupying concerns: access to food and security.
5. The failure of state protection
In virtually every interview Amnesty International conducted with survivors of recent attacks in the Dar Silah region of eastern Chad, the prevailing sentiment was one of abandonment and disenfranchisement. Members of the Dajor ethnic group in particular have an overriding sense that the Chadian government has no interest in protecting them from the wave of attacks that ravaged the area throughout 2006 and looks set to continue. In a time of extreme insecurity, faced with mounting attacks, they have repeatedly called on local authorities and the military to provide them with protection. Time after time, that protection has simply not been provided.
Amnesty International is concerned that the failure of the state to even attempt to provide a basic level of security to the inhabitants of the Dar Silah area and other parts of eastern Chad is of such a systematic and consistent nature as to point to a possibly deliberate policy on the part of the Chad government which appears to be only concerned with defending itself against Chadian armed opposition groups. The civilians in the region have been left to fend for themselves. Against the deadly weaponry of the Janjawid and their allies, village after village has had to defend itself with only its traditional weapons.
The pattern is disturbing and a clear violation of the Chadian government's international obligations to protect the people of Chad from human rights abuses, such as the systematic and widespread abuses by the Janjawid and their allies for well over a year.12 The failure arises at three critical levels: deterrence, response and aftermath.
There is no evidence of any proactive effort on the part of the Chadian authorities to enhance security in and around the villages that have come under attack. Soldiers are based only in the principal towns in the area, and do not appear to carry out regular patrols or missions into the areas that are at risk. A regular military presence in the area would almost certainly deter some attacks. The government of Chad, by focusing instead on the threat posed by Chadian rebel groups to its own survival, has failed to live up to its obligation to ensure that people in the east are protected from grave human rights abuses.13
This concern is further highlighted by the recent decision of the Chadian authorities to send a symbolic force of 120 troops to assist the government in the neighbouring Central African Republic to combat growing rebel activity in that country.14 This again conveys a clear message that protection of civilians in the east of Chad is a low priority for the government. Amnesty International recognizes that the government has the right and obligation to take steps to avert or respond to attacks from rebel groups. However it must adopt a strategy to ensure that the protection needs of Chadian citizens are met, in all parts of the country.
Nor has the military responded when faced with urgent requests from villages once they have come under attack. Amnesty International gathered considerable evidence of efforts made by villagers to send messages about attacks that were underway to local authorities, accompanied with pleas for soldiers to be deployed. Sometimes the message was conveyed by an emissary sent by the village to the nearest town with government officials. At other times it was immediately communicated through satellite telephone calls. In none of those cases did the military take action. Villages were left to face the Janjawid alone, often with fatal consequences.
Abakar Ramadan, Imam of Koloy, who is now living at a site for the displaced outside Adé, told Amnesty International.
"Every time there was an attack we begged and pleaded for the military to come and help us. They were only 2km away. They never came. Other times they had fancy words for us and would tell us: 'We are with you. We will protect you'. But words are not enough. When the attacks came they were never there for us. And then the worst came and we were attacked on 15 November . We tried one more time, but the Janjawid went on slaughtering us in the village, and the military stayed away. We don't matter in this country. We are not considered citizens of this country. They want us to die."
The Janjawid militia are keenly aware that the Chadian authorities make no effort to protect villagers in the area. Among the insults directed at the inhabitants has been the taunt: "Why is there no one here to protect you?" It is reasonable to assume that inaction on the part of the Chadian authorities positively fuels the attacks. Quite simply, the Janjawid know they will face only bows and arrows, spears and machetes. They raid villages confident that the Chadian military will not intervene.
The authorities have also failed to make any effort to provide security to displaced Chadians, be it at official, organized sites, or at spontaneous sites such as those outside Goz Beida, where displaced people from Djorlo have settled, and Adé, where there is a group displaced from Koloy. Internally displaced Chadians are vulnerable to continuing abuses, including rape, and security is an understandable worry and preoccupation for them. Chadian gendarmes do provide a minimal level of security in the camps in Dar Silah that are home to refugees from Darfur. Under a protocol between UNHCR and the Chadian government 315 gendarmes are to be deployed at 12 refugee camps in eastern Chad with the costs fully borne by UNHCR.15 There is no such arrangement, however, for displaced Chadians. Gendarmes are not stationed at their sites. Residents of these sites told Amnesty International that they rarely if ever see a gendarme or soldier.
Many displaced villagers told Amnesty International that they have approached gendarmes and soldiers for protection so that they can return to their villages, to check on crops and survey the damage. But again, their pleas have been denied. Saleh Mahamat, an elder from the village of Tamadjour, was interviewed at the displacement site outside Goz Beida.
"We have nothing, no food here. Back in our village we would be starting the harvest now. So we had no other choice. We had to send some of the men back to the village yesterday to check to see if our fields were burned and if there is anything to be harvested. A group of 50 went. We knew it might be very dangerous and that there might be Janjawid fighters in the area. We asked the gendarmes to give us a security escort, but they said they could not. We then asked if they would give us four Kalashnikov rifles to defend ourselves. Those are the same guns the Janjawid use. But again they said no. Our men have gone anyway. They had to. We have not heard yet whether they are OK."
International law makes it very clear that Chadian authorities have a specific duty to provide both protection and assistance to internally displaced persons. The complete failure of the authorities to offer any protection at Internally Displaced Persons sites is in clear contravention of this obligation.16
6. Sudan implicated in arming and training
The mounting human rights and humanitarian crisis in eastern Chad is closely linked to the continuing conflict and massive human rights violations in Darfur. From June 2006, Amnesty International has been reporting that the Sudanese government, which provides backing to the Janjawid militia in Darfur, was also supporting Janjawid attacks in eastern Chad. This has included a failure to patrol the border between Sudan and Chad, thus allowing the Janjawid to cross without hindrance. Amnesty International has repeatedly called on the Sudanese government to prevent further cross-border incursions. This has not happened.
The testimonies Amnesty International gathered throughout the Dar Silah region of eastern Chad have provided evidence that Sudanese authorities have backed the Janjawid groups responsible for the wave of attacks in October and November 2006. Survivors indicated that in most attacks, many fighters were dressed in green military uniforms and red berets, which are commonly associated with the Sudanese military. During a visit to the area in May 2006 Amnesty International delegates photographed identity cards from Sudanese paramilitary groups which were found on the bodies of Janjawid fighters, dressed in green uniforms, who died during attacks. The Janjawid leave the Sudan with firearms and return to the Sudan with loot. The Sudan government does not make any attempt to impede Janjawid incursions into eastern Chad. The survivors, who often know the names of the Chadian allies of the Janjawid who attack them, rarely recognize the Sudanese by name.
Janjawid groups have invariably been heavily armed with a range of weapons, including Kalashnikov and M-14 rifles, as well as G3 weapons with Sudanese markings.17 Villagers described spotting dozens, and even hundreds, of weapons in some attacks. Some of this weaponry, such as the G3s, is by no means readily available locally in eastern Chad. Villagers in the area still use traditional weapons as their principal means of defence.
Also notable are the consistent reports that a range of military tactics are used in many attacks, including well-planned ambushes and assaults by columns of fighters from different directions. Attackers have also been very deliberate in their targeting, including by firing on huts with the clear intention of setting them on fire. Such tactics appear more advanced than earlier, less well-organized raids, and suggest that a level of instruction has been provided to at least some of the fighters.
Villagers were clear about the range of weaponry available to their attackers, and that they had received arms and training from the Sudanese military. Hassan Isshak, chief of the village of Agroutoulou, described an attack on his village on 11 November 2006.
"It seemed like there were hundreds of Janjawid in the attack. They were all so well-armed, with weapons like I have never seen before. People told me that some of the weapons are called GEMs [G3s] and that those are the weapons the Sudanese army uses. So many of them were dressed in Sudanese uniforms. And they fought like an army, not a bunch of crazy villagers. Who taught them to fight like that? That is the question everyone should be thinking about. It surely was not anyone here. I think there is only one answer. The Sudanese army trained them, clothed them, and gave them their guns. That is why the Janjawid keep saying that this fighting is all about creating the New Sudan."
Most of the information gathered by Amnesty International indicates that the attackers have almost always arrived on foot, horseback and camelback. However villagers also referred to the occasional use of four-wheel drive vehicles in the attacks and their belief that these vehicles originated on the Sudanese side of the border. A survivor of the attack on the village of Djimilasit said that the attackers came primarily on horse and camelback, but that he saw three white Toyota Land Cruisers as well, one of which he is certain had a Sudanese license plate.
Similarly, an eyewitness to attacks on the village of Bediya told Amnesty International that he saw a white Land Cruiser arrive at a mid-point during the attack, to take away injured Janjawid fighters. He too is certain that it had a Sudanese number plate. The attackers said: "Listen, slaves, we are not the local Arabs, we are the Janjawid, well armed and trained."
Amnesty International also heard from a number of different sources that, in advance of the attacks in eastern Chad in 2005, overtures were made to leaders of local non-Arab ethnic groups in the Dar Silah region, inviting them to join the Janjawid coalition in fighting in eastern Chad. The Dajo leaders refused and the Dajo have been clear targets of attack ever since.
7. The need for urgent international action
The international community has a key role in improving security in eastern Chad, and also in tackling the impunity that has prevailed for the perpetrators of these recent attacks.
The people of eastern Chad feel and have been abandoned. The security vacuum has exacerbated community and ethnic conflict. It has also enabled Janjawid fighters backed by the government of Sudan and their Chadian allies unfettered access to attack civilians. Their own government provides them with no protection from those attacks. In virtually every interview carried out by Amnesty International in villages and sites for internally displaced people, Chadians indicated that they believe their only hope is for protection to come from elsewhere, such as the African Union or the UN.
In June 2006, Amnesty International called on both the African Union and the UN Security Council to take action to improve security in eastern Chad. The organization called on the African Union to expand the presence of the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS) along the Sudanese border with Chad, to prevent cross-border incursions by the Janjawid. Amnesty International urged the Security Council to assist the government of Chad in discharging its responsibility to protect civilians in eastern Chad through the possible deployment of an international force in border areas.
AMIS appears unable or unwilling to effectively patrol the border between Chad and Sudan. The prevalence of such attacks in October and November 2006 certainly underscores the fact that Janjawid fighters are still able to come and go as they please across that border.
The UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1706 on 31 August 2006. In the Resolution, the Security Council acknowledged that the situation in Darfur had led to increased insecurity and violence in eastern Chad, decided that the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) would deploy to Darfur, and urged the Sudanese government to consent to such a deployment. The Resolution also provided that the mandate of UNMIS in Darfur would extend to the regional security dimensions of the Darfur conflict, including by establishing a "multidimensional presence consisting of political, humanitarian, military and civilian police liaison officers in key locations in Chad, including in internally displaced persons and refugee camps." The Resolution also requested the UN Secretary-General to report to the Security Council on the protection of civilians in camps for refugees and the internally displaced.
By early January 2007, the "multidimensional presence" under Resolution 1706 had not been established. Three months after Resolution 1706 was adopted, a UN Technical Assessment Mission (TAM) did travel to Chad, and also to the Central African Republic. Because of security concerns, the TAM did not travel to eastern Chad. The Secretary-General submitted the TAM's report to the Security Council on December 22, 2006. The report highlights the serious and deteriorating human rights and humanitarian situation in eastern Chad and north-eastern Central African Republic and suggests some preliminary options regarding the possible mandate of a multidimensional UN mission in both countries, including the deployment of a "robust monitoring and protection mission"18 in eastern Chad and north-eastern Central African Republic which would "seek to deter attacks by armed groups and react pre-emptively to protect the civilian population, including refugees and internally displaced persons."19 The report also lays out a role for a hybrid Chadian/international policing deployment in eastern Chad, including in areas where internally displaced and refugee populations are found, as well as the deployment of human rights officers in the area.20
Other UN agencies have called for a strengthened UN presence in eastern Chad. On 14 November 2006 the UN High Commissioner for Refugees called on the international community to "quickly mobilize a multidimensional presence in Chad to help protect hundreds of thousands of Chadian civilians and Sudanese refugees, as well as aid workers trying to help them."21 UNHCR repeated its call for international action on 22 December 2006 and again on 5 January 2007.22
The Chadian government has indicated that it would welcome a UN protection force. Prime Minister Pascal Yoadimnadji made that clear in a meeting with Amnesty International delegates on 29 November 2006. Chadian President Idriss Déby wrote to the Security Council on 9 December 2006 confirming his agreement to the deployment of "an international presence at the border with Sudan" to strengthen security in the area and ensure protection of refugees and internally displaced persons.23
Amnesty International very much regrets since Resolution 1706 was adopted on 31 August 2006, the UN Security Council has yet to decide what action it will take in eastern Chad, particularly given the resumption and intensification of attacks against civilians during that period.
Crimes under international law are being committed in Chad. The Janjawid militia originating from Sudan and assisted by their local Chadian allies, such as Chadian Arabs and the Wadai and Mimi, remain the main perpetrators of these crimes. However, there is evidence that numerous other protagonists, including Chadian armed opposition groups and ethnic militia also continue to commit human rights abuses.
In addition to providing adequate security to the civilian population of eastern Chad, including IDPs and refugees, Amnesty International urges the Chad government to investigate allegations of human rights and humanitarian law abuses and violations committed in eastern Chad. In addition, the government should ensure that those reasonably suspected of committing crimes under international law, including crimes of murder, torture and other ill-treatment, rape, looting, destruction of property, are brought to justice in fair trials without the possibility of the death penalty. If the government is unable at the present time to either investigate allegations of, and/or bring to justice all of those who have committed, war crimes and crimes against humanity in eastern Chad, it should refer these situations to the International Criminal Court to ensure that those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Chad are brought to justice and victims receive reparation.
Protection of civilians
All parties to the conflict:
- The governments of Chad and Sudan, as well as all the armed groups operating in their territories, must respect their obligations under international human rights and humanitarian law, in particular those relating to the protection of civilians.
The government of Chad should:
- Take all effective measures to protect civilians, including refugees and the internally displaced living in areas adjoining the border with Sudan and vulnerable to attack by Janjawid or other forces. It should deploy security forces wherever necessary to safeguard civilians, giving particular attention to the situation in south-eastern Chad;
- Cooperate with the UN in order to enhance its protection capacity, for example through the deployment in areas along the border with Sudan of an international force as may be necessary for the protection of civilians, including refugees and the internally displaced.
The government of Sudan should:
- Disarm the Janjawid in accordance with UN Security Council Resolutions 1556, 1654, and 1591, the Security Protocol of 2004, the Darfur Peace Agreement of 2006 and take all effective measures to prevent further cross-border incursions into Chad by the Janjawid;
- Establish an independent, fair and effective vetting process for paramilitary forces such as the Popular Defence Force and the Border Intelligence Guard to ensure that those reasonably suspected of crimes under international law or human rights abuses are not part to these forces, pending independent and impartial investigations;
- Cooperate fully with AMIS or any peacekeeping force particularly in preventing cross-border raids into Chad;
- Facilitate the deployment of an effective peacekeeping force in Darfur with a strong mandate to protect civilians.
The African Union should:
- Impress upon the government of Sudan its primary responsibility to protect civilians in Sudan, including all displaced persons, to disarm the Janjawid in accordance with UN Security Council Resolutions 1556, 1654, and 1591, the Security Protocol of 2004, the Darfur Peace Agreement of 2006 and other international agreements and to prevent cross-border attacks against civilians in Chad by the Janjawid;
- Immediately reinforce AMIS in coordination with the United Nations, and ensure that it acts proactively and effectively to protect civilians;
- Ensure AMIS and any future international force in Darfur has the capacity to patrol the border area between Chad and Sudan.
The UN Security Council should:
- Authorize the deployment of an international presence in Chad mandated to effectively protect civilians, including the internally displaced and refugees. In addition to the necessary military and civilian police components, this presence should have strong human rights, gender, and child protection components and should be provided with sufficient resources to perform the mandate entrusted to it. The human rights component should include sufficient human rights monitors with the mandate and capacity to monitor, investigate and make periodic public reports on the human rights situation. The personnel deployed should adhere to the code of conduct for peacekeepers. Personnel suspected of violations of international human rights and humanitarian law should be brought to justice in accordance with international standards for fair trials;
- Immediately strengthen AMIS' command and control structures, provide sufficient logistics to ensure that it has the capacity to protect civilians and patrol the border area between Chad and Sudan, and proceed without delay with the deployment of an UN multidimensional force in Darfur as part of the agreed plan to establish a 'hybrid' AU-UN force.
Ending impunity for human rights violations
The government of Chad should:
- Ensure that those who have committed crimes under international law, including crimes of murder, torture and other ill-treatment, rape, looting, destruction of property, are brought to justice in fair trials without the possibility of the death penalty;
- Invite UN and AU human rights experts – including, in particular, the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions, the Representative of the UN Secretary-General on the human rights of internally displaced persons, the Special Rapporteur on refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced persons in Africa of the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights – to visit Chad;
- Implement the Rome Statute for the International Criminal Court promptly; and
- In the event that the government of Chad is at the present time unable to bring to justice those who have committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in eastern Chad, it should refer these crimes to the ICC to ensure that those responsible are brought to justice and victims receive reparation.
The UN Security Council should:
- Urge Chad and all other states to investigate and prosecute all those crimes under international law being committed in Chad that the ICC is unable to investigate and prosecute;
- Refer the situation in Chad to the ICC Prosecutor, in the case that the government of Chad fails to take prompt and effective action to bring those suspected of war crimes or crimes against humanity to justice or to refer the case to the ICC.
The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court should:
- Immediately take steps to investigate war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Janjawid inasmuch as crimes which were committed by armed groups leaving Darfur to attack civilians in Chad fall within the mandate of the ICC as part of the Security Council referral pursuant to its resolution 1593 (2005).
Ending violence against women
The government of Chad should:
- Formulate a detailed action plan to provide for the protection of women from gender-based violence. The government should work in close co-operation with UN experts, and with the participation of women and civil society;
- Ensure that this action plan is fully integrated into all measures, including the deployment of forces, to protect civilians, including IDPs and refugees;
- Take steps to ensure the security and protection of IDPs in accordance with relevant international standards including the UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement; ensure the freedom of movement of civilians; and take the necessary steps to maintain the civilian character and humanitarian nature of IDP settlements;
- Ensure that allegations of rape and sexual violence committed by any armed group or members of government forces are promptly, thoroughly and independently investigated; the findings of such investigations should be made public; those responsible for carrying out, ordering or acquiescing in rape and sexual violence should be brought to justice in trials that meet international standards of fairness. The safety of victims and witnesses should be protected;
- Take measures to provide all victims of sexual violence with access to medical treatment including psychological support, reproductive health services and treatment against sexually transmitted infections.
The UN Security Council should:
- Ensure that a future international presence in Chad has a strong gender component and gives a high priority to the protection of women and girls.
1 See Chad/Sudan: Sowing the seeds of Darfur – Ethnic targeting in Chad by Janjawid militias from Sudan. (AI Index: AFR 20/006/2006) 28 June 2006.
2 Including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women. Chad is also a High Contracting Party to the Geneva Conventions and has ratified its Additional Protocols. On 1 November 2006 Chad acceded to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
3 Dar Silah is the homeland of the Dajo, Dar Masalit, to the north, is the homeland of the Masalit. The 1984 famine caused a great deal of displacement in Darfur and Eastern Chad. Settlement of displaced populations on the land of other established ethnic groups has been a source of tension through which groups have been mobilized.
4 Other local people include the Masalit to the north, the Mouro, the Kajaksa, the Sinjar, the Mobeh and other smaller groups.
5 Some Dajo village chiefs and local officials told Amnesty International delegates that one of the reasons the Dajo have been targeted is that they refused requests by the Janjawid to join them in fighting other ethnic groups in Chad.
6 See Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, Sudan/Chad: 'No one to help them' – Rape extends from Darfur into eastern Chad, AI Index: AFR 54/087/2006, December 2006.
7 Unlike refugees, who receive assistance from the UNHCR and are gathered in camps, the UN does not have the mandate to assist internally displaced people unless the Chad government requests it. Chad's displaced who are gathered in recognized sites receive limited assistance from UNHCR, the International Committee of the Red Cross and other humanitarian organizations; those outside such sites receive little or nothing. See also below, pages 13-15.
8 Infibulation is the sewing together of the labia majora, to leave only a small hole. This is widely practiced in northern Sudan.
9 See articles 48, 52(2) and 54(2) of Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions. See also article 8(2)(ii) and (v) of the Rome Statute.
10 See article 33 of the fourth Geneva Convention and article 8(2)(b)(xvi) of the Rome Statute.
11 UNHCR Press Release, "Displacement from deteriorating security in eastern Chad tops 100,000" 5 January 2007.
12 These obligations include provisions in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, which guarantee, inter alia, the right to life, the right to freedom from torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment.
13 Amnesty International has made appeals for the Chadian government to live up to these obligations. See Chad/Sudan: Sowing the seeds of Darfur – Ethnic targeting in Chad by Janjawid militias from Sudan AI Index: AFR 20/006/2006, 28 June 2006.
14 Several hundred more Chadian soldiers have been deployed in the Central African Republic since 2003, some as part of a regional peacekeeping force.
15 Report of the Secretary-General on Chad and the Central African Republic pursuant to paragraphs 9(d) and 13 of Security Council resolution 1706 (2006), UN Doc..S/2006/1019, 22 December 2006, para. 36.
16 Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1998/53/Add.2, 11 February 1998, Principle 3: "National authorities have the primary duty and responsibility to provide protection and humanitarian assistance to internally displaced persons within their jurisdiction."
17 The G3 is a very common type of semi-automatic assault rifle originally made by the German company Heckler and Koch. Production is outsourced to many countries including Iran.
18 Report of the Secretary-General on Chad and the Central African Republic pursuant to paragraphs 9(d) and 13 of Security Council resolution 1706 (2006), UN Doc..S/2006/1019, 22 December, 2006., para. 85.
19 Ibid, para. 69.
20 Ibid, paras. 70, 73.
21 UNHCR Briefing Notes, Topic 1: Chad, November 14, 2006.
22 UNHCR Briefing Notes, Topic 1: Chad, November 14, 2006: HC in Chad: Emphasises UNHCR's commitment, urges stronger international presence to improve security, UNHCR Briefing Notes, December 22 2006; also UNHCR Press Release, "Displacement from deteriorating security in eastern Chad tops 100,000" January 5 2007.
23 UNSC: Report of the Secretary-General on Chad and the Central African Republic pursuant to paragraphs 9 (d) and 13 of Security Council resolution 1706 (2006) 22 December 2006. Para 16.