According to a confirmation from the national army of Chad read on national television, the newly re-elected President Idriss Déby has died of wounds he received while commanding his army in battles against rebels in the north.
Saturday 17 April. Night has fallen on N’Djamena and most Chadians have only one thing on their minds: breaking the Ramadan fast, which began less than a week earlier. Idriss Déby Itno (IDI) is thinking of something else. Since 11 April, columns of rebels have entered Chadian territory from Libya.
According to the latest French and Chadian intelligence in his possession, the rebels of the Front for Change and Concord in Chad (FACT) had made a breakthrough in Kanem. They are north of the town of Mao, some 300 kilometres from the capital.
The Marshal has sent reinforcements, but the insurgents are well armed and have military equipment, some of it Russian, amassed in Libya. IDI has his doubts. As is often the case, he decides to go to the front. As in 2020 on the shores of Lake Chad, he intends to show himself and galvanise his troops.
At the stroke of 10pm, he climbs aboard an armoured Toyota vehicle.