HRW says cutting off Cameroon from AGOA is wake-up call

International rights group, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has said the US termination of the designation of Cameroon as a beneficiary country under the Africa Growth and Opportunities Act, AGOA should be a wake-up call to the Cameroon government.

In a press release, the rights group notes that it has documented rights abuse by Cameroon since 2017 in the Far North region.
“These include killing of civilians, burning of hundreds of homes, and the systematic use of torture and incommunicado detention” the release read.

Noting that it is the second time the US is taking action on Cameroon in a year, HRW explained that the government has still not stopped its actions, recalling the recent torture and arrest of MRC militants.

The action of the US on AGOA HRW added “should stir action from other international partners to Cameroon to publicly address serious human rights concerns in the country”.

Cameroon Communication Minister, Rene Emmanuel Sadi talking to foreign media as well as others have since downplayed the decision, with some stating that it was not objective.

AGOA allows sub-Saharan African countries to export to the US without a customs duty, provided the country’s government has established or is making progress toward establishing, rule of law, political pluralism, fair trial and due process standards, and equal protection under the law.

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