from ROSY SADOU in Yaoundé, Cameroon
YAOUNDE, (CAJ News) – THE Boko Haram has reportedly killed at least 80 civilians in northern Cameroon since December.
This as the Islamist armed group has stepped up attacks on civilians in towns and villages in the region.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) documented the killings.
The terror group has also looted hundreds of homes in the region.
“Boko Haram is waging a war on the people of Cameroon at a shocking human cost,” said Ilaria Allegrozzi, senior Africa researcher at HRW.
Allegrozzi said as Cameroon’s Far North region increasingly became the epicentre of Boko Haram’s violence, the government should urgently adopt and carry out a new, rights-respecting strategy to protect civilians at risk.
Among other killings, HRW documented how a Boko Haram suicide bomber blew up fleeing civilians, dozens of local fishermen were killed with machetes and knives, and an elderly village chief was assassinated in front of his family.
HRW research suggests that the actual number of casualties is much higher, given the difficulty of confirming details remotely and that attacks often go unreported.
Most violations have been in the towns and villages of Darak, Gouzoudou and Mozogo among others.
However, the government of President Paul Biya has insisted the situation is under control.
Boko Haram is based in the neighbouring Nigeria.
– CAJ News