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Published:February 4th, 2008 05:54 EST
Calm before the Crush in Chad?

Calm before the Crush in Chad?

By SOP newswire

Rebels in Chad say they have purposely pulled out of N'Djamena, while the government says it has crushed the rebellion and fully controls the capital city.

Rebel leaders said Monday they deliberately withdrew to the outskirts of the city to give civilians a chance to escape.

Witnesses say thousands of people have fled the country, crossing the Chari River into Cameroon.

Chad's government said Sunday that it beat back the rebellion against President Idriss Deby. Officials also said government forces repelled a rebel attack on the eastern town of Adre, near the Sudanese border.

The U.N. Security Council plans to continue emergency talks today on the situation in Chad.

On Sunday, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed "profound alarm" about the fighting in Chad and its effects on innocent civilians.

Rebels began advancing on N'Djamena last week, vowing to overthrow President Deby if he will not accept a power-sharing government.

Mr. Deby has been in power since 1990. He has changed the constitution to eliminate presidential term limits.

His opponents accuse him of corruption. Some of his close confidants recently defected to the rebels.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

Source: www.voanews.org