Chad says it has completed a ground and air assault against rebels
based in neighboring Sudan, but the Khartoum government calls the bombing raids an act of war.
Chad's ground assault into Sudan captured 100 rebel prisoners
and its aerial bombardment of rebel bases across the border destroyed
seven groups of fighters, according to the government.
Interim Defense Minister Adoum
Younousmi told reporters in Ndjamena the offensive is now complete and
all Chadian forces have withdrawn from Sudan.
He said Chad's
ground assault reached as far as 40 kilometers inside Sudan and was
carried out without injury to local civilians or Sudanese government
Sudan says Chad's offensive is an "act of war" and it is considering how to respond.
says Chad does not need authorization to attack rebels inside Sudan as
it is an existing right that Chad will exercise "at any time and in any
place" by land, sea, or air.
Chadian President Idriss Deby is
again threatening to sever diplomatic relations with Sudan after
fighting earlier this month around the eastern city of Abeche, which he
blames on Khartoum for backing the rebel Union of Resistance Forces.
denies the charge and says Chad is supporting the Sudanese rebel
Justice and Equality Movement along the country's northwest border.
U.N. Security Council has condemned the rebel attacks in eastern Chad
and, without mentioning Sudan by name, has expressed its concern over
what it calls "the external support received by Chadian armed groups."
Chad and Sudan have long accused each other of backing rival rebellions.
broke diplomatic relations for a few months last year. The two
countries signed an agreement in Doha last month agreeing to normalize
relations and reject support for rebels.
Chadian rebels have
been trying to overthrow President Deby for more than three years and
briefly reached the capital 15 months ago. Part of the conflict
centers on how best to approach the conflict in Sudan's neighboring
Darfur region. More than 300,000 refugees from Darfur live in camps in
A U.N. military force for Chad is at about 40
percent of its troop strength of more than 5,000. The human-rights
group Amnesty International wants donors to step-up their assistance
for that force as it says the promise of security for the people of
Chad and Darfur remains an illusion.