Cameroon religious leaders denounce atrocities in restive Anglophone regions

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YAOUNDE, Sept. 19 (Xinhua | ) — Religious leaders of the Protestant Council, the Islamic Superior Council and the National Episcopal Conference of Cameroon on Wednesday condemned acts of violence in the two war-torn Anglophone regions of the country, the Southwest and the Northwest.

“We denounce the arbitrary and indiscriminate killings of Cameroonians by armed forces and the Amba Boys,” the leaders said in a statement on Wednesday.

Cameroonians generally refer to armed separatist forces as “Amba Boys”, as they seek to form a new nation called “Ambazonia”.

“We denounce the rampant attacks on educational institutions and the deprivation of children of their right to education,” the statement said, criticizing the “sluggishness and inadequate methods” with which the government is acting to solve the problem.

The leaders who said they were speaking “in one voice and on behalf of all believers and people of good will” insist the conflict can only be resolved through reconciliation and peace.
Samuel Kleda “We call on the government to promptly initiate and announce a national plan for resolving this crisis, taking into account its real and profound causes in view of establishing veritable peace,” Archbishop Samuel Kleda, president of the National Episcopal Conference and one of the signatories of the statement told Xinhua.

An armed conflict is in progress in the two Anglophone regions of Cameroon where armed separatist forces have declared “independence”.

According to the United Nations, the conflict has displaced over 180,000 people internally and at least 30,000 are seeking refuge in neigbouring Nigeria.