Anglophone separatists are committing gross human rights violations in Cameroon, and interfering with children’s education, including mass kidnappings of students, international rights advocacy organization, Human Rights Watch said on Thursday.
HRW urged separatist leaders, many based in the United States, to “immediately direct their fighters and followers to halt all human rights abuses and to stop interfering with children’s education.”
“Armed separatists have assaulted and kidnapped dozens of people during the same period, executing at least two men, amid intensifying violence and growing calls for secession of the North West and South West regions ” Human Rights Watch said.
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Armed groups fighting for the liberation of Cameroon’s Anglophone regions have repeatedly been criticized for serious human rights abuses, including kidnappings, killings and torture, as well as preventing children from attending school while setting some school buildings on fire.
Dozens of educational establishments are alleged to have been razed by separatist fighters.
HRW “violence has intensified since October 2018 as government forces have conducted large-scale security operations and separatists have carried out attacks. Cameroon’s government should investigate allegations of human rights violations and ensure that civilians are protected during security operations.”
Human Rights Watch also enumerated the atrocities committed by Cameroon security forces.
“Government forces in Cameroon’s Anglophone regions have killed scores of civilians, used indiscriminate force, and torched hundreds of homes over the past six months,” HRW said.