Heavy gunfire in Chad after attack on security HQ

 Heavy gunfire has been heard in Chad’s capital, N’Djamena, following a deadly attack on the headquarters of the National Security Agency.

Several people were killed in the attack, the government says, blaming the opposition party, Socialist Party Without Borders (PSF).

PSF leader, Yaya Dillo, told AFP this was a “lie”.

The unrest comes a day after the announcement that Chad will hold presidential elections on May. 6

Communication Minister, Abdera­man Koulamallah, said the attack was led by Mr Dillo.

Mr Dillo denied this and said he wasn’t even present.

The opposition leader told AFP the accusations were intended “to prevent me, to physically eliminate me… To make me afraid so that I don’t go to the election”.

One of his colleagues gave Reuters news agency a different account of the incident.

The PSF general secretary said soldiers near the National Security Agency (ANSE) had opened fire at party members as they were trying to retrieve the body of their colleague, Ahmed Torabi.

The government says Mr Torabi had attempted to assassinate the presi­dent of the Supreme Court.

He was arrested, then shot dead on Tuesday and his body dumped outside the ANSE HQ, according to the PSF official.

Relatives and party members who tried to get the body were shot at, resulting in multiple fatalities, he said.

Mr Dillo has also denied any links to the assassination attempt, which he described as “staged” according to AFP.

The government said PSF members had been arrested over the attack on the ANSE HQ and will be prosecuted.

“Anyone looking to disturb the democratic process under way in the country will be prosecuted and brought to justice,” the government said in a statement quoted by AFP.

It is not clear if Mr Dillo was among those arrested, but in a Face­book post on Wednesday morning, he said the military had come for him at his party headquarters. —BBC

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