Tuesday 23 May 2017

UN envoys plan Paris conference to aid Chad

UN envoys plan Paris conference to aid Chad
(AFP 03/05/17)

UN envoys on a mission to the Lake Chad region said Saturday that a conference would soon be held in Paris aimed at easing the humanitarian crisis gripping Chad.

The country is one of several battling the Boko Haram jihadist insurgency, which has driven thousands from their homes and plunged areas into hunger and poverty.

"The international community must respond to the moral and political obligation to support Chad's efforts," Francois Delattre, France's permanent representative to the UN, said in the capital, N'Djamena.

Senegal's UN representative, Fode Seck, said Chad "has been on the front lines when it comes to helping Mali or fighting against Boko Haram."

"It's normal that the Paris Conference, which we are all preparing, comes to Chad's aid."

The 15 envoys from the UN's top decision-making body began their mission in Cameroon, and also plan to visit camps in Nigeria sheltering some of the 2.3 million people displaced in the Lake Chad region.

Chad, a country of 12 million people, has imposed austerity measures to cope with the economic strain from falling oil prices and the cost of foreign military operations.

"Chad has committed its own resources against jihadists in Mali, and against the Boko Haram sect in Cameroon, in Niger and in Nigeria," Prime Minister Albert Pahimi Padacke told the envoys after a meeting Saturday.

"Chad is being confronted with these social difficulties because it is bearing these military costs and the care of refugees," he said.

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