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Chad opposition leader canceled by Idriss Debija Israel's rapprochement with Israeli news

Opposition leaders and civil society groups in Chad condemned Central African President Idriss Deby for visiting Israel this week and his intention to enter into diplomatic relations with him.

Political and civic leaders said that Chad should not resume diplomatic relations with Israel while it continues to occupy Palestinian territories and African countries do not collectively decide on relations.

Deby became the first Muslim representative of the nation who had been to Jerusalem for decades and which, according to Chadian analysts, was a magnificent achievement of intellect and military ties between the Deby government and Israel.

Al Jazeera's Fadoul Abderazak, reporting from the capital, N'Djamena, said that most Chadian political foundations suspect that Debby's motive for restoring ties with Israel was to keep control of the country through Israeli military and intelligence assistance.

Chad broke ties with Israel in 1972 when the African Unity Organization, the predecessor of the current African Union, issued a decision to reduce diplomatic relations with Israel in solidarity with the Palestinians.

The Chadian Association for Civil Associations in Jerusalem, a group of 22 civilian organizations, issued a statement condemning Deby's visit to Israel.

"We strongly condemn the presidential visit to the Zionist community," the statement said.

"By this statement, we apologize on behalf of the people of Chad, saying that the president's visit is not represented to us because it will not change our people's support for the Palestinian rise," added the statement.

Opposition leader Mahamat-Ahmad Alhabo, leader of the Freedom and Development party, opposes convergence, saying that without the African consensus, Chad should not re-establish ties with Israel.

Alhabo said that Deby had not informed the people of Chad about his visit to Israel, adding that the Chadians learned about it through the Israeli media.

Mahamat-Ahmad Alhabo [Al Jazeera]

"Israel cares only about its own interests and plans to use Chad as a Trojan horse through which it can be used as a forward for establishing links with other African countries," Alhabo added.

"Chad should only restore ties with Israel after it ceases aggression against the Palestinians and ceases its illegal occupation in the Palestinian territories, especially in the Muslim holies in Jerusalem," he said.

The Israeli prime minister's office said on Tuesday that netanyahu will soon visit Chad to formally establish diplomatic relations between the two countries.

But Abu Bakr Yousef Zayed, a former deputy of N'Djamena Mayor and member of the ruling party in the 1970s, said Al Jazeera that Chad should not consider his religious or cultural background when discussing his ties with Israel.

"Chad should use ties with Israel, in particular because Israel has enormous military and intelligence capabilities," he said.

Israel's vision of Africa

Temiza Fakuda, a senior researcher at the Al Jazeera Center and Central African expert, said that Israel is starting to make great strides on this continent and is playing an important role in supporting African countries, especially in East Africa.

The Arab countries have ignored Africa and left it to Israel to rebuild their presence, which was once the basis for supporting Arab causes in the international arena, said Kakuda.

In fact, adding that while African leaders are benefiting from access to Israeli intelligence and military training, Israel has, on the other hand, turned to a greater strategic goal.

Israel is trying to change the UN equation and legitimize its policy in the occupied Palestinian territories in the eyes of the world.

Themeisa Faquda, an African expert

"The main goal of Israel's move to Africa is to increase the number of votes when it comes to voting in United Nations organizations such as the General Assembly and the Human Rights Council." The African states generally support the Palestinians and condemn the actions of Israel, "he said.

He argued that with the help of Israel, through its efforts in Africa, the UN vote will eventually change to prove that Israel is more supportive of the international community.

"Israel is trying to change the UN equation and legitimize its policy in the occupied Palestinian territories in the eyes of the world," Kafuda added.

Follow Ali Younes on Twitter: @ali_reports

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