N’Djamena, 16 July 2022 (TDI): The European Union (EU) has welcomed the announcement of a new date for the promised pre-election National Dialogue of Chad.

The National Dialogue will be a precursor to elections in Chad promised by interim president Mahamat Idriss Deby when he seized power following his father’s death last year.

EU and the National Dialogue

EU has backed the National Dialogue deeming it ‘vital’ for the democratic transition in Chad.

The EU laid emphasis on the importance of pre-Doha dialogue in this regard. The pre-Doha dialogue had brought together the Chadian rebel forces and the transitional government to break the deadlock on elections. The Gulf State was also the mediator of the entire dialogue.

Negotiations in Doha complemented the inclusive Chadian national dialogue, which had been stalled due to a failure to come to an agreement over differences. The initial date was 27 February. The renewed date is 20 August.

The EU delegation has also backed up African Union’s efforts in this regard. The delegation emphasized the information gathered by AU’s fact-finding mission in Chad as important.

Chad’s National Elections

Deby declared himself head of a Transitional Military Council in April 2021 after his father, Chad’s longtime ruler Idriss Deby, was killed while visiting troops fighting an insurgency in the north.

Initially, the council had said it would oversee an 18-month transition to democratic rule. However, it has shown little sign of organizing elections as that deadline nears.

Pressure has started to grow from opposition groups within Chad and bilateral partners to advance the transition process. Chad is an ally of France and other Western countries in the fight against Islamist militants in Africa’s Sahel region.