President Paul Biya and his government are doing all to ensure the protection of civilians especially children and women in strict respect of international humanitarian laws.
FRU Claudia AMABO
Cameroon, which has ratified international conventions relating to international humanitarian law as well as the protection of human rights has been upbeat in ensuring these values are adequately preserved even as the terrorist attacks on the soldiers and public structures including hospitals and schools are increasing.
The situation in the field at the moment, is under control by Defence and Security Forces with a close follow-up of administrative authorities. The situation has not escalated to the extent that the United Nation’s Peace keeping force is needed in the country. Cameroon is not in war per se but rather defending sporadic attacks from armed separatist group who are claiming independence of the English-speaking part of the country.
Ever since the ongoing crisis in the two English Speaking Regions escalated with violent extremism by secessionist, the government of the republic of Cameroon is not unaware of the necessity to protect the vulnerable population especially women and children. Cameroonian soldiers have demonstrated their professionalism so far as they battle with secessionist fighters known as “Ambazonia Defence Force” (ADF) in localities in the North West and South West Region.
Just like Cameroon combatted the Boko Haram terrorist group in the Far North Region with success, so too are the soldiers combatting the armed secessionist groups without military excesses as President Paul Biya has instructed. Cameroon battled with the Boko Haram terrorist group in the Far North Region with collaboration with the Multinational Joint Taskforce involving Nigeria, Chad, Niger and Cameroon forces since the Lake Chad Basin was under attack by the terrorist without any deployment of the peacekeepers. Why then is the buzz about the UN Security Council deploying UN peace keepers in Cameroon for purely an internal crisis that the government is sparing no efforts in solving. It is true that there are smear campaigns especially on the social media on atrocities committed on the ground just to tarnish the image of Cameroon on crimes against humanity.
The Menka incident is just one among many examples of military action aimed at protecting the population. The military raided a hideout of a gang of armed youth on a tip off from the population that was being terrorised by these armed separatist fighters and rescued some 20 hostages that were held captive. Some young girls were raped severally by the armed group. The intervention of the defence and security forces neutralising scores of them in a cross fire was a relief to the population of that locality.
How come then that the social media and some press reports on the international media is giving a different image of the incident even after the traditional ruler of Menka has expressed gratitude to the military for rescuing the entire village. It is therefore a clear sign that there is a hidden hand that wants to destabilise Cameroon by giving a wrong impression about the country to the international community with unfounded accusations crimes against humanity in the country. What happened in other countries like Cote d’Ivoire, Libya, Iraq and Syria should serve as a big lesson for Cameroon as concerns the so-called UN Peace keeping missions that rather created more chaos and destruction than restoring peace.