Face veil ban implemented in Chad

Chad implements law stating anyone wearing face veil may be arrested by police, afterwards attack by disguised suicide bomber occurs in country’s capital

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Updated Oct 16, 2015

Chadian police announced on Sunday that anyone wearing a full face veil in the country will be arrested. A day after a Boko Haram suicide bomber carried out an attack in the Chadian capital of N'Djamena killing 15 people.

Chadian authorities banned the full veil, or burqa, last month for security reasons, but only now appear to be implementing the law.

A suicide bomber dressed in a burqa blew himself up in the main market in N'Djamena early on Saturday, killing 15 people and injuring more than 80, spreading panic across the city.

Paul Manga, a national police spokesman, said "This attack just confirms that a ban on the full-face veil was justified," adding that the ban on full-face covering should be respected by the entire population.

"Anyone who does not obey the law will be automatically arrested and brought to justice," he warned.

Security measures were tightened across the capital on Sunday with police and soldiers deployed in intersections, markets and mosques.

Nine women traders were killed in the attack and fear still permeates the market where it took place.

"What was happening elsewhere and what we heard about from media reports is now happening here," said Zenaba, a woman trader in her forties.

"I'm really scared for me and my children," she said.

Two suicide attacks took place previously in police stations in N'Djamena in June, killing at least 34 people. Since then, Chadian authorities have heightened the frequency of arrests in efforts to dismantle Boko Haram’s network in the country.

A coalition of the four nations of Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon reportedly pushed back the armed group from captured towns and villages in a military operation which began in February.

At least 15,000 people have been killed and more than 1.5 million displaced since the conflict with Boko Haram began in 2009.


TRTWorld and agencies