The sudden death of Chad President Idriss Déby has propelled his son, Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno, to the helm of the central African nation
He has a reputation for discretion and shunning the limelight, unlike some of his half-brothers. However, he is a battle-hardened soldier like his father.
Mahamat is 37 – the same age his father was when he took power in a coup in 1990.
He is known as “General Kaka” because he was brought up by his grandmother, or “Kaka” in Chadian Arabic.
Mahamat was, until his father’s death, the head of the elite presidential guard.
He was one of several members of the late president’s family who occupied senior positions in the government.
Mahamat was reportedly at the frontline with his father when the latter was injured in fighting with rebels in western Kanem Province.
He received military training in Chad in the mid-2000s, followed by three months at the Lycee-Militaire in Aix-en-Provence, France.
He took part in operations against Chadian rebel groups, helping to defeat some of them while fighting for his cousin Timane Erdimi in the eastern region in 2009.
Mahamat was rapidly promoted and became a general in 2010 when he took command of the presidential guard’s armoured division.
In 2013, he was appointed deputy head of the Chadian forces in Mali, where he took part in operations alongside the French army at the start of the Islamist insurgency there.
A year later, he was appointed to the elite presidential guard.
Following the death of his father, he was appointed by the military to lead Chad for an 18-month transition period.