France says Chad transitional government must be temporary

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FILE PHOTO: Members of the security forces patrol Chad's capital N'Djamena following the battlefield death of President Idriss Deby in N'Djamena

PARIS (Reuters) - France on Monday welcomed the formation of a new transitional government in Chad by the African country's military rulers following the battlefield death of President Idriss Deby but said it should only last a limited amount of time.

"France reaffirms its attachment to the stability and the territorial integrity of the country," the French Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"France also reiterates that it is paramount the transition should be for a limited amount of time," it added.

Chad's leading opposition figures rejected the government appointments as a continuation of an old order they hoped to erase. The opposition and rebels dismissed the takeover as a coup and said the military must relinquish power to a civilian-led government.

(Reporting by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Nick Macfie)