News / Africa

Amnesty Reports Killings, Illegal Detention in Chad

FILE - Chad President Idriss Deby.
FILE - Chad President Idriss Deby.
Gabe Joselow
Rights group Amnesty International says hundreds of people have been illegally detained in Chad in an ongoing crackdown on critics of the government.  
 
Chadian authorities have been targeting members of the opposition since breaking up an alleged coup attempt in May of this year.
 
Amnesty says up to eight people were killed in a shoot-out with the supposed conspirators near the capital N’Djamena, and many others were detained, including members of parliament.
 
Christian Mukosa, Amnesty’s Chad researcher, says the whereabouts of 30 people arrested in the crackdown are still unknown.
 
“So far we don’t have correct information of where those people are currently detained, and what we know is they don’t have access to their family members, they don’t have access to a lawyer and they don’t have access to any medical attention," said Mukosa.
 
Amnesty says hundreds of people are detained in the country and are often held in deplorable conditions.  The group is calling for the release of all prisoners detained without charge.
 
Mukosa says the government has been receptive to Amnesty’s complaints, but has done little to improve the rights situation.
 
“The issue of killings, of forced disappearances, illegal detention and arbitrary arrests is not new in Chad.  And we have been denouncing this since even during the era of former President Hissene Habre and we continue doing it now, but so far, we’re still pushing, pushing but the change is very hard to come," he said.
 
Habre is accused of overseeing thousands of political killings in Chad during an eight-year reign that ended with his ouster in 1990.  He is due to face genocide charges at a special tribunal in Senegal.
 
Chad, now under the rule of President Idriss Deby, was elected as a non-permanent member of the U.N. Security Council last month.
 
Mukosa says he hopes the Council will put pressure on the country to improve its rights situation.
 
“When a country is a member of the Security Council, it must be a responsible country and we take it as a good opportunity for the country to make sure its poor human rights record is rectified," he said.
 
 Chad won the election despite being on a U.N. watch-list for countries known to employ child soldiers.  In 2011, Chad signed an action plan to stop the recruitment of children.

You May Like

Australia Knights Prince Philip, Sparking National Outrage

Abbott's surprise reintroduction of knights and dames in the country's honors system last year drew criticism that he was out of touch with national sentiment More

SAG Award Boosts 'Birdman' Oscar Hopes

Individual acting Oscars appear to be sewn up: SAG awards went to artists who won Golden Globes: Julianne Moore, Eddie Redmayne, Patricia Arquette, J.K. Simmons More

Katy Perry Lights Way for Super Bowl's Girl Power Moment

Pop star's selection to headline US football championship's halftime show extends NFL's trend of selecting artists who appeal to younger viewers More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sidesi
X
June Soh
January 23, 2015 10:03 PM
The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, even music are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. Faith Lapidus narrates a report from VOA’s June Soh.
Video

Video Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sides

The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, even music are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. Faith Lapidus narrates a report from VOA’s June Soh.
Video

Video Progress, Some Areas of Disagreement in Cuba Talks

U.S. and Cuban officials are reporting progress from initial talks in Havana on re-establishing diplomatic ties. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State (for Western Hemisphere Affairs) Roberta Jacobson said while there was agreement on a broad range of issues, there also are some “profound disagreements” between Washington and Havana. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.
Video

Video US Marching Bands Grow Into a Show of Their Own

The 2014 Super Bowl halftime show was the most-watched in history - attracting an estimated 115 million viewers. That event featured pop star Bruno Mars. But the halftime show tradition started with marching bands, which still dominate the entertainment at U.S. high school and college American football games. But as Enming Liu reports in this story narrated by Adrianna Zhang, marching bands have grown into a show of their own.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid