INTRODUCTION: The Organisation of African Unity has condemned the Libyan Arab Jamahiriyah for its intervention in the civil war in Chad, and denounced the proposed merger of the two countries.
GV Smoke rising from gunfire at Ndjamena (2 shots)
CU Captured Libyan tank
CU Captured Libyan prisoners (4 shots)
GV PAN Refugee camp at Kousseri (4 shots)
GV PAN Refugees crossing river in small boats
GV PAN OVER Refugee camp (2 shots) (7/1/1981)
SV Group of refugees (3 shots)
SV Refugees receiving grain
SV PAN New timber huts under construction (3 shots)
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Background: INTRODUCTION: The Organisation of African Unity has condemned the Libyan Arab Jamahiriyah for its intervention in the civil war in Chad, and denounced the proposed merger of the two countries. At a one-day summit held in Lome, the capital of Togo, on Wednesday (14 January), African leaders called on Libya to withdraw its troops immediately from Chad.
SYNOPSIS: The latest round of fighting in Chad had lasted for nine months. But in the middle of December, the Armed People's Forces, loyal to President Goukouni Oueddi, defeated the Armed Forces of the North, which backed his rebel Defence Minister, Hissene Habre. Libyan forces played a decisive role in President Goukouni's victory. Libyan soldiers were among the prisoners captured by Mr. Habre's forces, although Libya had always maintained in the past that its troops were not involved in the fighting.
Kousseri, just across the Cameroun border, was once a small frontier village. Now it is a vast tented camp. For in the past fourteen years of intermittent fighting in Chad, more than 200,000 refugees have crossed into Cameroun, and most of them are still living in these makeshift conditions. The strain on the resources of the Cameroun government and the international relief agencies has been severe.
Chad and Cameroun are separated at this point by the Chari River; and while the fighting continued, a constant stream of small boats took more and more refugees across to Kousseri. Now, although peace has officially returned to N'Djamena, the civilian population is in no hurry to go back home. In any case, the city could no longer support its former population. There is a shortage of drinking water and electricity. There are reasonable supplies of food but money and work are scarce. Even before the war, Chad was one of the poorest countries in the world.
In the meantime, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and other agencies have built camps for the refugees, and are doing what they can provide them with minimum standards of food and shelter.