Chad president accused of war crimes

The Extraordinary African Chambers on Sept. 3 confirmed that war crime accusations have been filed against Chad's President Idriss Deby. The special tribunal in Senegal is overseeing the case against the former president of Chad, Hissène Habré (BBC profile), who was accused of crimes against humanity, war crimes and torture. A Senegalese lawyer, Mbaye Jacques Ndiaye, filed the charges against Deby to hold him responsible for the role he played in perpetuating the alleged crimes of his predecessor while he served as Habré's army chief.

Habré fled to Senegal after being deposed in 1990 and was charged with war crimes and placed in pretrial detention by the Extraordinary African Chambers in July 2013. Known as "Africa's Pinochet," the former Chadian dictator must answer claims that his secret police tortured and killed up to 40,000 people during his reign from 1982-90. In March, a criminal court in Chad sentenced seven ex-police officers to life in prison for crimes committed during Habré's rule. The special tribunal suspended the trial in July due to the need for court appointed attorneys to prepare Habré's defense and will recommence on Sept. 7.

From Jurist, Sept. 4. Used with permission.