Cameroonian Soldiers Again Kill Unarmed People, Says Amnesty International

On August 10 Amnesty International released a video that purportedly shows Cameroonian soldiers executing unarmed people in the country’s Far North region sometime before May 2016.[1]

According  to the organization’s Ilaria Allegrozzi, “This shocking video shows armed men lining people up face down or sitting against a wall and shooting them with automatic weapons. A second round of shooting ensures no survivors. Here is yet more credible evidence to support the allegations that Cameroon’s armed forces have committed grave crimes against civilians, and we are calling for an immediate, thorough and impartial investigation. Those suspected to be responsible for these abhorrent acts must be brought to justice.”

Cameroon’s ambassador to the U.S., Henri Etoundi Essomba, told The Washington Post that he was unaware of the latest video, so he could not comment directly on it, but he said, “No one can condemn Cameroon on video without making sure that what [they are seeing] is supporting reality. This shouldn’t be surprising to anyone in the sense that people are willing to portray the country in the darkest way possible.”

In Cameroon Tchiroma Bakary, a government spokesman, told Reuters that the latest video could be investigated, but that there is an ongoing “denigration” campaign attempting to tarnish President Paul Biya ahead of October elections. Biya, who has led the country since 1982, is running for reelection. “We are in an electoral period and it’s conducive to this kind of thing,” he told Reuters. “People want to discredit the army and president.”

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[1] Amnesty Int’l, CAMEROON: New Video Shows More Brutal Killings by Armed Forces (Aug. 10, 2018); O’Grady,  Video footage appears to show Cameroonian security forces executing unarmed people, Amnesty says, Wash. Post (Aug. 10, 2018); Kouaheu, Cameroon investigates video that shows security forces apparently executing civilians, Reuters (Aug. 10, 2018). Earlier reports of violence in Cameroon are listed in List of Posts to dwkcommentaries–Topical: CAMEROON.

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dwkcommentaries

As a retired lawyer and adjunct law professor, Duane W. Krohnke has developed strong interests in U.S. and international law, politics and history. He also is a Christian and an active member of Minneapolis’ Westminster Presbyterian Church. His blog draws from these and other interests. He delights in the writing freedom of blogging that does not follow a preordained logical structure. The ex post facto logical organization of the posts and comments is set forth in the continually being revised “List of Posts and Comments–Topical” in the Pages section on the right side of the blog.

One thought on “Cameroonian Soldiers Again Kill Unarmed People, Says Amnesty International”

  1. More Violence in Cameroon

    Amnesty International on September 18 reported escalation of violence in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon. The bases for the report were two videos that are believed to be in the area of Belo in the North West region of the country.

    The first video shows an individual identifies himself as being a member of the armed separatists group “Ambazonia Liberation Forces”. The same video shows images of a gendarme’s decapitated head.

    The audio in the second video, which is believed to be a continuation of the first one, has a voice that can be heard saying that the armed separatists had taken the gendarme’s rifle, which Amnesty International identified as an AK Chinese Type 56, a model that is ubiquitous in the region.

    Samira Daoud, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for West and Central Africa, said, “The situation in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon is becoming increasingly desperate with no one spared from the violence which is spiraling out of control.”

    Amnesty International has recorded more than 260 security incidents since the beginning of the year, ranging from clashes between armed separatists and security forces, kidnappings of members of the general population and the killing of security forces by armed separatists. The incidents also include unlawful killings by the security forces, and the destruction of private properties by both sides. Up to 400 ordinary people have been killed so far this year by the two sides.

    On 3 September, in the town of Bafut in the North West region, armed separatists kidnapped seven students and the head of the Presbyterian Comprehensive Secondary School (PCSS), who was tortured and seriously injured while in captivity. The hostages were released in the following days and the head of the school was taken to the hospital for treatment.

    Also around 10 September, armed separatists attacked the positions of soldiers stationed near the well-known St. Joseph’s College Sasse in the town of Buea, causing an intense exchange of fire between them and the security forces. People living around told Amnesty International that they have heard heavy gunfire for a few hours on the night of the incident.
    ======

    Amnesty Int’l, Cameroon: Horrific violence escalates further in Anglophone regions (Sept. 18, 2018), https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2018/09/cameroon-horrific-violence-escalates-further-in-anglophone-regions/

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