Chad accuses CAR troops of 'war crime' at border

Chad's defense ministry charged May 30 that troops of the neighboring Central African Republic (CAR) attacked a Chadian military post, and that this amounted to a war crime. Chad's Foreign Minister Cherif Mahamat Zene said: "The Central African armed forces attacked the outpost of Sourou in Chad [and] killed a Chad soldier, injured five and kidnapped five others who were then executed in Mbang on the Central African Republic side."

The relationship between Chad and the CAR has been tense for many years, with a history of harboring each other's insurgent groups. Thousands of refugees have fled waves of violence related to armed insurgency in the CAR since 2013.

CAR's Communications Minister Ange Kazagui said a firefight had broken out by mistake when CAR troops pursued a rebel group near the Chadian border. The identity of the alleged rebels is yet to be confirmed, but a senior Chad security official told AFP news agency, speaking anonymously, that the rebels were members of Unity for Peace in Central Africa.

Chad's embassy in the Central African Republic released a statement saying it was told by the head of the CAR police to collect the bodies of the five soldiers who were executed, and called it "extremely serious war crime and this premeditated murderous attack, planned and carried out within Chad...cannot go unpunished."

From Jurist, June 1. Used with permission.

Note: Unity for Peace in Central Africa is a member of the Coalition of Patriots for Change (CPC), but recently announced that it is withdrawing from the rebel coalition. (France24)

Russian mercenaries killed in CAR

Three Russians and two CAR police troops were killed when a military vehicle struck a roadside bomb in the Central African Republic's northwestern village of Bandiba on May 28. (Sputnik, RFE/RL, UNIAN) The CAR government is contracting mercenaries from Russia's Wagner Group to help beat back multiple insurgencies.