Gunmen kill 24 in anglophone Cameroon, says mayor

Macau Business | Twenty-four civilians have been killed and around 60 wounded in an attack by separatist gunmen in a troubled anglophone region of Cameroon, the local mayor said on Tuesday.

Separatists on Sunday attacked the village of Obonyi II in the Southwest Region near the border with Nigeria, mayor Ekwalle Martin told AFP.

“The separatists wanted the inhabitants to pay them money each month, they refused, and that’s why they (the gunmen) attacked,” said Martin.

“The toll is 24 dead and at least 62 wounded,” he said.

The attack was confirmed by a local administrative official, speaking on condition of anonymity, who gave a death toll of at least 15 civilians.

The Southwest and neighbouring Northwest Region are home to a large anglophone minority in the majority French-speaking country.

In 2017, anglophone resentment at perceived discrimination radicalised, snowballing into a breakaway movement that declared independence for the two regions.

President Paul Biya, 89, responded with a crackdown.

Clashes between militants and security forces have claimed more than 6,000 lives and displaced around a million people, according to the International Crisis Group.

Civilians have suffered abuses committed by both sides, according to international NGOs and the United Nations.

The separatists’ entity, called the Federal Republic of Ambazonia, has no international recognition.

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