The Ministry of Defense reacted to accusations made by Human Rights Watch against the defense and security forces in the North West.
In one of its recent reports published on August 11, 2022, the non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) accuses the Cameroonian army of having committed new killings in the North West region as part of the Anglophone crisis. . And that it killed at least 1 people, burned 12 houses and looted health centers, during operations carried out between April 24 and June 12, 2022, precisely in the localities of Belo, Chomba, Missong and Ndop .
For the army, this report dwells on abuses “ which bear the marks of irredentist terrorists ”, these armed separatist groups at war against the central government. Charges rejected by the Ministry of Defense for which “ HRW is known for its aversion against the Cameroonian defense and security forces “.
Faced with this “umpteenth provocation by Human Rights Watch“, Captain Cyrille Serge Atonfack Guemo informs that, “ Cameroon being a State of law, the procedures following the administrative and judicial investigations triggered following these incidents (…) are continuing serenely in accordance with the laws and regulations in force“.
“It is important to remember that HRW is known for its aversion against the Cameroonian Defense and Security Forces and its logic which consists systematically in attributing to the liabilities of the Cameroonian army, the abuses reported in the North-West and South- West, on the basis of alleged testimonies distilled by secessionist terrorists,” the Mindef spokesperson wrote in a press release.
The army spokesperson considers this new exit from HRW, which aims to undermine the morale of the troops engaged on several fronts, to be excessively provocative. He assures that “despite this umpteenth provocation by Human Rights Watch, the defense and security forces, whose morale is in no way affected, calmly continue their operations in the four corners of the country, with respect for human rights. and human rights, while ensuring that any deviation established and verified is sanctioned”.
International organizations regularly accuse the army of abuses in the North West and South West regions. The government denies carrying out massacres against civilians and has always made it known that when a blunder is proven, the culprits are brought to justice. This is the case of the Ngarbuh killings on February 14, 2020, where soldiers and armed civilians attacked villages and killed around ten people. Those arrested in connection with this case are currently answerable for their actions before the Yaoundé military court.