Maroua (National Times)-At least 14 persons are reported dead following multiple attacks by suspected elements of the Islamist group, Boko Haram within the last 48 hours in the Far North region. Among the casualties are seven soldiers while the rest are civilians.
In the night of Saturday breaking Sunday June 9th, an attack masterminded by suspected elements of the group in Kolofata in the Mayo Sava division of the Far North region left a woman dead, according to French newspaper, L’Oeil du Sahel.
Meanwhile, at least two persons were killed following violent exchanges between the group and Cameroonian soldiers in the locality of Nguetchewe in the Mayo Tsanaga division of the same region.
About 24 hours after that, the group staged another audacious attack, resulting in the reported killing of seven soldiers in the locality of Darak around the Lake Chad area. Two civilians were equally killed while some soldiers have been reported missing. According to some human rights groups, at least two soldiers are still unaccounted for.
Moreover, in the afternoon of Monday, Boko Haram unleashed its fury again on the population killing two traders along the Kolofata-Armchide road.
It is the bloodiest 48 hours in recent times as Boko Haram has stepped up its game since the beginning of this year both in Nigeria and Cameroon as the latter’s government concentrates in the war down South.
Concentration on the Anglophone war
Despite the rudimentary tactics and arsenals of the armed groups in Anglophone Cameroon, the war seems to the most disturbing menace in Cameroon since reunification in 1961. It is the only war that seeks to break the country apart.
Sensing danger, government has employed enormous human, material and financial resources to fight the armed groups. Most importantly it has employed the elite wing of the military, the BIR which is used to crack down separatist fighters. The same force is as well accused of committing gross human rights violations by NGOs.
The General Coordinator of the Anglophone General Conference (AGC), Elie Smith in a recent interview granted English Language Biweekly The Post newspaper said, the original intent of the BIR was to fight terrorism and not get involved in the Anglophone war.
The journalist stated that according to the US government which equips the BIR, no element of the unit was supposed to be in the North West and South West regions. He said the US government is increasingly worried about the movement of soldiers from the North to the Anglophone regions as well as government’s over concentration on the war down South which has ensured that Boko Haram has resumed effective activity.
And according to latest reports, with government’s resolve to use force and solve the Anglophone conflict, the newly graduated 2,600 elements of BIR would be entirely deployed to the restive Anglophone regions. This, according to Elie Smith, is partly the reason why the US government and European partners are preparing tough sanctions on Biya regime officials.