Cameroon: Clear ‘window of opportunity’ to solve crises rooted in violence – Bachelet

Content provided by APO Group. CNBC Africa provides content from APO Group as a service to its readers, but does not edit the articles it publishes. CNBC Africa is not responsible for the content provided by APO Group.

The UN human rights chief on Monday welcomed Cameroon’s willingness to cooperate over finding workable solutions to “major human rights and humanitarian crises”, caused by months of serious unrest and violence across the west and north of the country.

The announcement came after the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, concluded a visit to the West African country. During three days of meetings and consultations in the capital, Yaoundé, she met President Paul Biya to discuss the human rights challenges facing the country, and initiatives the Government has taken to deal with them, as well as their broader linkages with peace, security and development.

 “I believe there is a clear – if possibly short – window of opportunity to arrest the crises that have led to hundreds of thousands of internally displaced people, as well as the killings and brutal human rights violations and abuses that have affected the northern and western areas of the country,” Ms. Bachelet said in a statement.

Warning that it will not be an easy process, Ms. Bachelet stressed that “it will take significant actions on the part of the Government, and substantial and sustained support from the international community – including us in the UN.”

With ten or more separatist movements in the North-West and South-West region, the situation could spiral “completely out of control, if measures are not taken to reduce tension and restore trust”, said Ms. Bachelet underlining that it’s essential to tackle root causes of violence, for the sake of long-term stability.

Reported cross-border incursions by armed groups and criminal organizations along Cameroon’s border with the Central African Republic (CAR), as communities continue to be terrorized and attacked by Boko Haram, and other extremist organizations, are a persistent challenge.

Cameroon is also hosting hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Central African Republic and Nigeria.

“In several regions, civilians and soldiers have been killed and mutilated, and entire villages have been burned.  Children have been abducted and forced to join the armed groups and have even been utilized as unwitting suicide bombers by Boko Haram”, she said.

“In the two western regions, schools, hospitals and other key infrastructure has been targeted and destroyed by the various separatist groups; and government employees, including teachers who have dared to continue teaching, have been targeted and killed or abducted”, the statement said.

With everyone – Government, opposition and civil society – in agreement that Cameroon is facing the most serious set of crises it has seen in years, and that they need to come to an end as soon as possible, the statement added that “everyone can make important contributions to a drive for peace, if they can discuss options openly and freely.” 

The UN human rights chief also offered to provide advice and assistance to the Government, to help ensure military operations are in compliance with international human rights standards and violations are prevented, when military forces are engaged in counter-terrorism operations and combat against armed groups.

Saying that this was a first step to the restoration of peace and security, Ms. Bachelet concluded that “the stakes are high, not just for Cameroon itself, but for the whole region.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of United Nations (UN).Media filesDownload logo

Related Content

Distell CEO: What the sale of alcohol under level 3 means for the industry

South Africans can look forward to popping their favourite bottle of bubbly or sipping on a glass of pinotage to warm up from the cold winter. That’s as alcohol sales, that were banned for over two months under the Covid-19 lock-down, will be lifted. Distell CEO Richard Rushton joins CNBC Africa for more.

This Rwandan publisher is creating buzz with new book App

After realising the challenges that come with publishing fellow African writers, home-grown publishing house, Imagine We Rwanda launched their very own mobile app, dubbed, Imagine Books. Fast forward 2 weeks and hundreds of titles have been purchased worldwide and the numbers are only going up. CNBC Africa spoke to the founder, Dominique Alonga for more.

COVID-19: This virtual concert campaign is bringing together African artists for charity

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected livelihoods across the continent and different initiatives have been instituted to support them. One of them is a campaign dubbed “We are one Africa” which aims to sustain various communities and groups through virtual concerts. Project Manager, Andrew Alovi joins CNBC Africa for more.

Kenya’s tech sector unveils video conferencing system

Kenya has recently launched the first made-in-Africa video conferencing system that will enable users to enjoy better quality calls with unlimited attendees, at more affordable prices. The video conferencing system will also enable African countries to retain the fees in local economies, compared to competition that repatriates it off the continent. Jay Shapiro, CEO and Co-Founder of Usiku Games joins CNBC Africa for more.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Sign up for free newsletters and get more CNBC AFRICA delivered to your inbox

More from CNBC Africa

Rebosis rolls out COVID-19 testing stations outside malls

Property Group Rebosis, has partnered with government to roll out testing stations for Covid-19 outside its shopping malls in Pretoria – South Africa’s capital. However, foot traffic into these malls is expected to have dived due to the virus lock-downs prevented non-essential stores from trading. Rebosis is yet to release its interim results. Rebosis CEO Sisa Ngebulana joins CNBC Africa for more.

Distell CEO: What the sale of alcohol under level 3 means for the industry

South Africans can look forward to popping their favourite bottle of bubbly or sipping on a glass of pinotage to warm up from the cold winter. That’s as alcohol sales, that were banned for over two months under the Covid-19 lock-down, will be lifted. Distell CEO Richard Rushton joins CNBC Africa for more.

This Rwandan publisher is creating buzz with new book App

After realising the challenges that come with publishing fellow African writers, home-grown publishing house, Imagine We Rwanda launched their very own mobile app, dubbed, Imagine Books. Fast forward 2 weeks and hundreds of titles have been purchased worldwide and the numbers are only going up. CNBC Africa spoke to the founder, Dominique Alonga for more.

COVID-19: This virtual concert campaign is bringing together African artists for charity

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected livelihoods across the continent and different initiatives have been instituted to support them. One of them is a campaign dubbed “We are one Africa” which aims to sustain various communities and groups through virtual concerts. Project Manager, Andrew Alovi joins CNBC Africa for more.

Partner Content

VIVO CEO is a dynamic leader for this innovative global brand

May 2020 -- Six months ago the vision for vivo in South Africa was just beginning to...

Building Africa’s Biggest Digital Classroom

An enduring lesson learnt throughout our 175-year existence is that, while things rapidly change around us, the things that truly matter don’t!...

Trending Now

How The Medical Device Supply Chain Failed During Covid-19

More than three months into the coronavirus pandemic, health-care workers on the front-lines of the battle against Covid-19 say they still face shortages of personal protective equipment. The personal protective shortage was one of the early flashpoi

Tsogo Sun Hotels FY profits plunge, COVID-19 lock-downs weigh

Hospitality Group Tsogo Sun Hotels reported a 31 per cent plunge in full year headline earnings per share, with Covid-19 resulting in demand from international tourist retracting in the fourth quarter, due to global lock-downs.

Nampak swings into H1 loss, suffers R3bn impairment

Nampak swung to a half year loss of R2.4 billion as revenue plunged and it impaired its Angola and Nigeria assets by R3 billion, which is four times its market value. The also warned that future profits were in South Africa were at risk from the ban on alcohol sales due to Covid-19 lock-downs. Nampak CEO, Erik Smuts joins CNBC Africa for more.

How COVID-19 impacts the health & well-being of children

Research shows that children have a lower rate of contracting the Coronavirus and bringing infections to the household. This should provide comfort to South African parents that are in two minds about sending their kids back to school next week, when physical teaching is set to resume. Epidemiologist, Dr Boshoff Steenekamp joins CNBC Africa for more.
- Advertisement -