Separatist violence grips Anglophone Western Cameroon
04 May 2018 | 2:26 pm
Insurgents in English-speaking regions of western Cameroon have launched a series of attacks on security forces. Calls for Anglophone autonomy in the West African country have escalated since the government cracked down on a protest movement.
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Cameroon holds the draw for the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday. After the coronavirus scuppered the football event last year, the Central African nation is set to host the CAN in January and February last year. As Cameroon battles with the war against Boko Haram, separatist conflict in English-speaking areas and the health crisis, the financial benefits and morale boost offered by the competition can't come soon enough.
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For the past decade, residents of Cameroon's Far North region have been living in fear of attacks by Boko Haram. The Islamist terror group targets the military but also civilians. It is active in a large zone that also covers north-eastern Nigeria and the Lake Chad basin. In the past 10 years, more than 7,000 people have been killed in Cameroon. In a bid to counter this violence, the country's authorities are reaching out to those jihadists who agree to lay down their weapons. Our correspondents report from a rehabilitation centre.
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With an increase of attacks from Boko Haram, ordinary people in northern Cameroon have banded together to stop the militants from terrorizing their villages. But there are many challenges facing the local vigilante members, who are putting themselves at risk for others.
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Our guest warns of a devastating crisis in Cameroon's western Anglophone regions, where for five years the military has been fighting separatists who want to break away from the Francophone country. Education has been one of the main casualties, with separatists allegedly attacking thousands of teachers, students and parents as they enforce a boycott of schools. Meanwhile, Cameroon's military is accused of killing civilians, razing homes and burning down villages. Human Rights Watch is calling for a response that focuses on dialogue and crimes perpetrated by both sides. The NGO's senior researcher Ilaria Allegrozzi joined us for Perspective.
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The violent conflict in Cameroon's Anglophone regions that has engulfed the country shows no signs of abating. Now into its fifth year, we look back at the start of the crisis.
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A civil war has been raging in Cameroon since 2016. Separatists in Anglophone regions want their own state, called Ambazonia.
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Authorities in western Cameroon appealed for calm after a policeman killed a schoolgirl in the troubled region and was lynched by an angry mob.
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In the far north of Cameroon, Nigerian refugees have been fighting desertification for the past four years. The desert advances by 12 percent every year in the region, which gets on average three times less rainfall than the rest of the country. But the UNHCR is hoping that its programme at the Minawao camp can help turn back the tide. More than 360,000 seedlings have already been grown in the nursery and planted over more than 100 hectares. Our correspondents report.
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