Chad’s President Idriss Deby died of injuries sustained on the frontlines during a visit to the Sahel country’s north, where soldiers are battling rebels, an army spokesman said on Tuesday.
Deby, 68, “has just breathed his last defending the sovereign nation on the battlefield” over the weekend, army spokesman General Azem Bermandoa Agouna said in a statement read out on state television.
DNT Correspondent reports that the army said a military council led by the late president’s 37-year-old son Mahamat Idriss Deby Itno, a four-star general, would replace him.
It is not yet known if the injuries that caused Deby’s death were sustained from friendly fire, but one observer DNT spoke with said he cannot rule that out. Deby came to power in a rebellion in 1990, won a sixth term, as per provisional results released on Monday. Deby took 79.3 percent of the vote in the April 11 presidential election, the results showed.
Stay with DNT for more updates on this developing story.