ASG for Rule of Law and Security Institutions at DPKO, Mr. Dimitry Titov, visits Chad

16 Feb 2009

ASG for Rule of Law and Security Institutions at DPKO, Mr. Dimitry Titov, visits Chad

N'Djamena, 9 February 2009-- ASG for Rule of Law and Security Institutions at DPKO, Mr. Dimitry Titov, visited the Chadian Prime Minister, Mr. Youssouf Saleh Abbas and MINURCAT, the peacekeeping operation in the Central African Republic and Chad, to get a first had account of developments in this nascent mission. Mr. Titov also travelled to the Mission's forward headquarters in Abeche and sector base in Iriba, where some of the 250,000 refugees from neighbouring Darfur and 180,000 IDPs sought shelter. ASG Titov was able to exchange views with a number of Chadian officials including the Ministers of Justice and Human Rights, local governors, sultans and police commanders.

MINURCAT's unique feature is the selection and training of a Chadian humanitarian protection force dubbed Détachement Intégré de Sécurité or DIS. Mr. Titov acknowledged that the deployment of both the MINURCAT mission and the DIS, under such challenging logistical conditions and given the regional securities challenges linked to instability at the Chad/Sudan border, was nothing short of a miracle. This achievement was all the more complex due to the relative short timeframe for deployment and the harsh climatic conditions on the edges of the Sahara desert.

There are currently 600 out of 850 DIS deployed in 6 police stations and 12 police posts in the eastern Chad. The DIS can be seen on the ground and partners ranging from local authorities to international non-governmental organizations expressed their satisfaction to the visiting New York delegation. The presence of the DIS and MINURCAT were said to be stabilizing factors in an otherwise volatile and dangerous area. Construction of proper accommodation, installation of communications equipment and transport necessary to deploy the remaining 250 are underway.

The geopolitical importance of the country merits sustained donor support. The core activities of the Mission depend on the good will of a handful of donors who are contributing to the MINURCAT Trust Fund. Just over USD 21m has been received or pledged to date, but at this rate we will not be able to support to deployment and operations of the DIS through the second half of 2009.
Mr. Titov reminded Chadian authorities that a unique opportunity was afforded to them through the presence of the international community who is willing to assist Chad in addressing impunity in a comprehensive fashion. Although DIS law enforcement is necessary, it is insufficient without proper justice and corrections systems that instil confidence in the administration of justice among the Darfur refugee, displaced and local populations in the east.

In the months to come, Mr. Titov said that MINURCAT will develop a case-tracking mechanism to monitor individuals detained or arrested by the DIS, and expand the mobile court system to key locations in eastern Chad. The Mission will also work closely with national and local authorities to build bridges between traditional and formal justice actors; and strengthen key prisons in eastern part of the country.