At least 100 people were killed in Chad on Thursday as thousands of people defied a protest ban and took to the streets of the capital to denounce the transitional military government’s failure to turn power over to civilian rule.
Police used tear gas to break up the demonstration in Ndjamena.
Gunfire was also heard, according to a dpa journalist in the city.
Some 300 other people were reportedly injured, Prime Minister Saleh Kebzabo told a press conference late on Thursday.
Participants in the demonstration had, in some cases, set up roadblocks and burned tyres.
Protests were also reported from three smaller towns. Kebzabo spoke of an armed uprising that security forces should have put down.
He imposed a curfew between midnight and 6 am (2300 and 0500 GMT).
The African Union condemned the violence and said that deaths had occurred, without giving a figure.
In a statement, the French Foreign Ministry spoke of the “use of deadly weapons against demonstrators” without giving any further information.
France also denied any involvement in what happened in Chad.
Claims have been circulating, particularly on social media, that the interim president is being supported by France.
The clashes erupted after Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno, president of the Transitional Military Council, said it would be another two years before civilians could take charge. Déby was sworn into the position a little more than a week ago.
Oil-rich but poverty-stricken Chad has been in a political transition since the April 2021 death of long-time ruler Idriss Déby Itno, the father of the current president.
The iron-fisted leader was killed by rebels seeking to overthrow his government. (dpa/NAN)