In its latest report, the Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa (CHRDA) and the Raoul Wallenberg Centre for Human Rights (RWCHR) say crimes against humanity and war crimes have been committed in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon.
In a report aimed at providing evidence-based characterisation of the conflict in the North West and South West Regions of Cameroon, focus is on the events from October 2016 to May 2019.
In a shocking declaration, the Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa and the Raoul Wallenberg Centre for Human Rights say war crimes against humanity have been committed on the Anglophone regions of Cameroon.
The two non-governmental organizations recount cases of human rights abuses with pictures and videos to substantiate their report.
The Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa run by Barrister Agbor Nkongho says Anglophone Cameroonians have suffered persecution, murder, forcible deportation, deprivation of basic rights, imprisonment, rape and sexual violence, which all fall under crimes against humanity.
Recognizing that Cameroon did not ratify the Rome treaty, the NGOs called on the international community to apply special measures on Cameroon, like the case of Darfur Sudan and punish parties and individuals responsible for the persecution of Anglophones.
The President of the CHRDA highlighted that there exist several other measures which could be applied by the ICC, including punishing individuals for war crimes in Cameroon.
They cited and confirmed previous reports of NGOs on Human rights abuses like extra judicial killings, burning of villages, arbitrary arrests and detention, torture inflicted by soldiers on the people of the Anglophone regions of Cameroon while calling on the international community to bring perpetrators to book.
Like in previous reports published by the CHRDA, the CHRDA and the RWCHR say over 206 entire villages have been burned in the North West and South West Regions between December 2016 and May 2019, over 550 000 people displaced by the war in the two regions and about 10 percent of the regions’ population, with an additional 30 000 to 35 000 thousands now seeking asylum in Nigeria.
Painting the picture of how chaotic the two regions are with the presence of the Cameroonian military, the armed militias, and some gangs of armed bandits, the international rights groups say the war in the North West is not an internal affair, and moreover the existence of an internal conflict does not absorb or minimize Cameroons responsibility under international law in the respect of human rights and similar obligations.
The joint report of the CHRDA and the RWCHR also highlighted the fact that civilians are being used as human shields, and by extension increasing the number lives lost and the rate of human rights violations which are likely to worsen in the coming days as the crisis deepens further
They acknowledged that some media outlets, and most importantly social media has been used to exposed some of the crimes against humanity even in real time, but also regretted that the same medium has been used to propagate hate and falsehood.
Mimi Mefo Info