Security forces in Chad on Thursday used force to disperse a banned protest calling for a quicker transition to democratic rule, firing tear gas at crowds and causing the death of a journalist, a Reuters reporter said.
The vast, military-led Central African nation has been on edge since the sudden death of President Idriss Deby while visiting troops fighting rebels in April 2021.
There has been resistance to a transitional military council headed by Deby’s son, who took power after the president’s death and pushed back elections to October 2024.
Critics are demanding a swifter return to democracy and a change in government after Deby ruled the impoverished desert country with an iron fist for three decades.
Demonstrators used burning tyres to block roads in the capital N’Djamena early on Thursday, defying a government ban on the protest.
Several people were wounded as police used force and tear gas to break up gatherings throughout the city of around 100 people.
Some protesters and posts on social media said live bullets were fired, but Reuters could not independently verify that claim.
A local journalist was shot and died from his injuries a few hours later, his brother said.
The government did not respond to a request for comment.
Security forces have cracked down on several civil society and opposition-led protests denouncing the military takeover and France’s backing of the transitional government, sometimes causing deaths in the process.
In May, police fired tear gas and used a water canon to disperse anti-French protests that saw the destruction of French-linked businesses.