Suicide bombers hit police HQ in Chad’s capital
TWO blasts outside the police headquarters and academy have killed at least 10 people in the capital of Chad, whose forces have been instrumental in fighting armed group Boko Haram in neighbouring Nigeria, police officials have said.
The country’s interior minister said at least one suicide bomber attacked the police and intelligence offices in N’Djamena yesterday, with social media reports indicating causalities.
Interior Minister Abderahim Bireme Hamid told the Reuters news agency that security forces had locked down the area but the situation was ongoing.
A police official who spoke on condition of anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to the media said at least 10 people had been killed in that attack, according to the AP news agency.
Security sources told Reuters that death toll is at least 20. Social media users in the capital said that a number of deaths had been reported and that Boko Haram was suspected of carrying out the attack.
The government convened an emergency meeting following the explosions, an official said on condition of anonymity. Oil-producing Chad has taken a leading role in the fight against armed groups across West Africa, playing a central role in offensives on al-Qaeda-linked groups in Mali and Boko Haram fighters in neighbouring Nigeria.
Chad has lost dozens of soldiers in the fighting in northern Mali and northern Nigeria, and there have been a number of attacks near Chad’s border with Nigeria.
However, N’Djamena has so far not yet been attacked. The riverside city, which lies on the border with Cameroon, is the headquarters for a regional taskforce being launched to fight Boko Haram, supposed to group troops from Nigeria, Chad, Niger, Cameroon and Benin.