Aid workers murdered in recurring Cameroon clashes

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from ROSY SADOU in Yaoundé, Cameroon
YAOUNDE, (CAJ News) THE humanitarian community in Cameroon has bemoaned the killings of aid workers during a series of attacks, violent extortion and harassment against personnel in regions agitating for independence.

These agitations and violations are rife in the South West and North West regions of the country.

A worker serving with the Community Initiative for Sustainable Development (COMINSUD) in the northwestern Batibo town was killed this past weekend following kidnap by unidentified armed individuals from his home earlier.

“I am outraged and saddened by the killing of another aid worker in the North West region of Cameroon,” Siti Batoul Oussein, the humanitarian coordinator in Cameroon, said.

The murder of the COMINSUD official comes barely a month after the killing of a community health worker in the South West region.

Oussein said the violence against humanitarian workers was not acceptable under any circumstances.

“It jeopardizes access to much needed assistance for people affected by the crisis in the South West and North West regions,” she reiterated.

The envoy urged armed actors to refrain from any attacks or obstruction of aid workers and humanitarian agencies on whose assistance so many lives depended.

Some militants in the largely English-speaking western Cameroon are agitating for self-rule and the creation of autonomous state called Ambazonia.

They allege marginalistion by the government that is dominated by French speakers.

Violence peaked in 2017 when the separatists declared independence.

The resultant clashes between the militants and government forces have killed approximately 3 000 people and forced more than 500 000 civilians to flee their homes to neighbouring in Chad, Central African Republic (CAR), Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Congo and Nigeria.

– CAJ News

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