Fighting between rival Muslim armies seeking power in Chad entered its eleventh day on Tuesday (1 April) following the failure of a fourth attempt at a ceasefire.
GV PAN: Deserted streets in N'Djamena
SV: Truck moving along street
SV: Body lying in street
GV: Car moving towards burning roadblock
GV: Wrecked truck blocks road
GV: Refugees with belonging in streets
GV: Refuges leaving town. (2 shots)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Fighting between rival Muslim armies seeking power in Chad entered its eleventh day on Tuesday (1 April) following the failure of a fourth attempt at a ceasefire. Intensive street battles involving mortars, bazookas and heavy machine guns raged in the streets of the capital N'Djamena. During the lulls, thousands of refugees fled the city for the safety of neighbouring Cameroun, but the fourth ceasefire in as many days hardly stopped the fighting at all.
SYNOPSIS: Eleven days of intensive fighting have devastated Chad's capital of N'Djamena. Deserted streets echo with the sounds of continuing gunfire and shelling as the fourth ceasefire in as many days fails to bring the warring parties to a halt.
More than a thousand people have died and 15-hundred have been wounded in the battles which have been concentrated around the capital. Basically, the conflict is between northern armed forces loyal to Chad's Defence Minister, Hissene Habre, and a loose coalition of troops led by President Goukouni Oueddei.
A congolese peacekeeping force had pulled out, the city's hospital is being evacuated and everyone who can is leaving. Tens of thousands of civilians have fled south to neighbouring Cameroun and a number of foreign diplomats have taken refuge at the air base outside the city. Those who are left have resigned themselves struggle before the final victor emerges.