The President of the Transitional Military Council, Mahamat Idriss Déby, returned on Tuesday evening from a two-day official visit to Qatar. Many had hoped that there would be an opportunity for a meeting between the head of the military junta and the rebel leader Timan Erdimi. But this long-awaited tête-à-tête between the two enemy brothers did not take place in the end, according to the two parties.
In fact, the meeting between the two men was “never on the agenda”, Chadian Foreign Minister Cherif Mahamat Zène explains, recalling that their visit to Qatar aims to “strengthen bilateral cooperation between the two countries”.
On the side of the opposition alliance, its spokesman Youssouf Hamid did not want to comment at the moment on a meeting that many Chadians had called with all their wishes. A relative of the UFR leader spoke, “about a missed opportunity to make peace with the brave” between the two men, blood cousins from the same Zaghawa community.
Timan Erdimi rebelled against his uncle Idriss Déby Itno in 2005. In 2019, his offensive from southern Libya was stopped by the bombing of the French Mirage in 2000. Meanwhile, the Chadian soldiers sent to the front – the vast majority of the Zaghawa community – did not want to fight “against their blood brothers”, according to specialists.
Today, Débys does not want to take the risk of seeing a Timan Erdimi, even weakened (especially by the departure of some twenty leaders who have already reached the Chadian capital), disembark in Ndjamena at a time considered “sensitive” to their power. “His presence can destabilize their army,” further relatives explain.
“Caricature,” responded the head of Chadian diplomacy. He wants to reassure the CMT chairman of the will “to make peace with all the Chadian rebel groups who want it”.