An African Union team have arrived in Chad this week to prepare for the starting up of the Trust Fund for the Victims of Hissène Habré’s crimes.
The team, led by Alex Tordeta Ratebaye, deputy chief of staff of the AU Commission chairperson, who also serves as Chairperson of the Trust Fund, is holding discussions with the government and with lawyers for Habré’s victims.
Victims and their supporters hailed this development, which, after many years of delay, is certainly due to all the attention given to the plight of the victims after Habré’s death on August 24 in Dakar, Senegal.
Mr. Habre died while serving a life sentence for crimes against humanity following his conviction by an African Union-backed court in 2016.
In a separate trial in Chad, a court on March 25, 2015, convicted 20 Habré-era security agents on murder and torture charges and awarded 75 billion CFA francs (approximately $139 million) in reparations to 7,000 victims, ordering the government to pay half and the convicted agents the other half.
Clement Abiafoutah, the president of the victims association of the Habre regime has been reacting to the arrival of the AU team in N’djamena.