Chad, a landlocked country in North-Central Africa with a population of 10.5 million inhabitants, has suffered from 40 years of civil unrest and multiple military coups. The present leadership of President Idriss Déby who seized power from Hissen Habré in 1990 has been marked by a continued insecurity as President Déby has faced about half a dozen insurgencies since taking office with the majority of rebel attacks originating from the Eastern part of the country and Sudan. In February 2008 rebels from three groups attacked N'Djamena, demanding the resignation of President Déby but were however deterred by the Chadian military.
This ongoing history of conflicts in Chad coupled with increasing fighting in the Sudanese Darfur region and northern Central African Republic (CAR) resulted in large scale internal displacement of about 110,000 people within Eastern Chad and more than 240,000 Sudanese refugees fleeing Darfur, settling in 13 refugee camps in Eastern Chad. About 60,000 refugees fleeing civil conflict in northern CAR reside in 5 refugee camps in Southern Chad.
Despite the absence of large scale fighting in Chad since the rebel attacks on N'Djamena in February 2008, effective humanitarian aid has been severely hampered as insecurity continues to escalate and, to a large extend, directly targets relief workers. Attacks, kidnappings and killings of humanitarians in Eastern Chad have been increasing despite the presence of, initially, a special European force (EUFOR) which, since March 2009, was replaced by forces of the United Nations Mission in Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT). Moreover, the return of refugees to Sudan and CAR is very unlikely to happen soon as these countries still face instability related to rebel movements and uncontrolled insecurity especially in areas bordering Chad.
Humanitarian actors will continue to ensure life saving assistance and protection to refugees and IDPs in camps and sites and also build national and local actors capacity.