Chad: Will The National Dialogue Resume?

There are doubts that the inclusive national dialogue will resume today, after being suspended since Saturday due to unrest in Ndjamena. The party which boycotted the Inclusive National Dialogue had intended to organize a rally on Saturday, but was prevented from doing so. Hundreds of activists were arrested.

On Saturday evening, the former Foreign Minister of Burkina Faso was in talks with the leader of this opposition party, Succès Masra and, according to the latter, the lifting of the blockade and the unconditional release of its imprisoned activists were prerequisites for any discussion. Djibril Bassolé, talks facilitator appointed by Qatar, was the only person to access the headquarters of opposition coalition of the Transformers since Friday morning when the police blocked access to the building.

In this tense situation, the Catholic church in a statement via its representative Bishop Waingué Bani Martin said they were suspending their participation in the dialogue because “we have the impression of attending an electoral campaign”. The bishop said that they did not want to appear as supporting one party against the other.

Human rights associations also issued an ultimatum saying if the army does not release its siege around the opposition premises, they will not be present at the resumption of the dialogue scheduled for today.

Military vehicles were being withdrawn from the headquarters of the Transformers party, to the great relief of the neighborhood and some activists. Reliable sources say those arrested would also be released on Monday morning.

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