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Renewed Fighting In E. Chad, Ban Deeply Concerned

Ban voices deep concern at renewed fighting in eastern Chad

16 June 2008 - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed his deep concern about the deteriorating security situation in Chad following renewed fighting in the east of the country between Government forces and members of the Chadian Armed Opposition Group.

Mr. Ban has called on all parties to immediately stop their hostilities, abide by previous peace accords and turn to dialogue to achieve a negotiated settlement of the crisis, according to a statement issued by his spokesperson.

"The Secretary-General condemns all attempts to destabilize the country and is concerned about the risk of a deterioration of the already grave humanitarian situation, especially in eastern Chad, where the international community is actively engaged in providing relief and securing the voluntary, safe and sustainable return of refugees and displaced persons," Mr. Ban said.

Last year the Security Council authorized the deployment of a multidimensional UN presence - known as MINURCAT - in eastern Chad and the northeast of the neighbouring Central African Republic (CAR), which have both been beset by fighting, armed banditry and massive displacement in recent years.

The situation has been made more complicated by the conflict across the border in the Darfur region of Sudan, which has displaced hundreds of thousands of refugees into camps and makeshift settlements in eastern Chad.

ENDS

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