Chad army deploys in force after junta leader Déby is elected president

Chadian soldiers deployed on Friday in large numbers across several districts of the capital after late-night celebrations marked the presidential election victory of junta leader General Mahamat Idriss Deby Itno.

Even before the official results gave Deby more than 61 percent in Monday's ballot, the presidential guard had parked many armoured vehicles on major junctions and thoroughfares.

AFP reporters said the number of troops on the streets Friday appeared considerably larger than after previous elections.

Just hours before the official results were announced late Thursday, Prime Minister Succes Masra had declared himself victor in the vote.

The former opposition leader appointed prime minister in January, had warned that Deby's team would rig the results to ensure he won.

Masra urged Chadians to "mobilise peacefully but firmly... to prove our victory".

The electoral commission said Masra had garnered only 18.53 percent of the vote.

The regime had long muzzled opposition figures and Deby's main rival was killed in February.

The 40-year-old was proclaimed transitional president three years ago by his fellow generals after his father, iron-fisted president Idriss Deby Itno, had been shot dead by rebels after 30 years in power.

At least two teenagers were wounded by falling bullets, an AFP journalist saw.


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