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Chad's transitional govt says won't negotiate with regrouping rebels

Mahamat Idriss Deby pays his respects near the coffin during the state funeral for his father Chadian president Idriss Deby in N'Djamena, on April 23, 2021.   -  
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Chad's new military transitional government said it will not negotiate with the rebels blamed for killing the country's president Idriss Deby.

In a televised statement, the military spokesman, Gen. Azem Bermandoa Agouma, said the rebels were seeking to collaborate with ``several groups of jihadists and traffickers who served as mercenaries in Libya.''

``Faced with this situation that endangers Chad and the stability of the entire sub-region, this is not the time for mediation or negotiation with outlaws,'' he said.

The rebel group known by their French acronym Fact said on Sunday it was joining other armed groups, who oppose Deby's son Mahamat Idriss Deby taking control of the country for 18 months ahead of new elections.

The defense and security forces launched after them with the support of the air force located the enemy scattered in small groups regrouping in Niger territory,` far from the Chadian capital.

A spokesman for the rebel group said it had not given up.

The Chadian rebels were based in southern Libya and are believed to have crossed back into Chad on election day.

The vote handed Deby a landslide victory, extending his 30 years in power.

But the next day he was killed while visiting the frontlines.

Opposition groups have called his son's appointment a coup-d'etat and have called for a demonstration on Tuesday.

The former colonial power, France, has been careful not to criticize the military's actions, and French President Emmanuel Macron attended Deby's funeral last week. Chad is home to a French military base where counterterrorism operations for the region are headquartered. Chad also has supplied critical troops to the U.N. peacekeeping mission in northern Mali.

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