Cameroon president “concerned” over growing insecurity, vows peace efforts


YAOUNDE, Jan. 19 — Cameroon’s President Paul Biya said on Friday he was “very” concerned about rising insecurity in the two English-speaking regions and in its mountainous Adamawa region. He pledged efforts to restore peace.
In the Adamawa region, “shepherds are victims of criminal groups specialized in kidnappings with ransom demands,” Biya said while presiding over the graduation ceremony of the Combined Services Military Academy in the capital, Yaounde.
“The situation in the Northwest and Southwest is and remains at the center of my concerns. The armed groups have in recent months engaged in killing spree. The populations are the main victims of these groups,” Biya added.
The president raised the concerns amid increasing calls across the country for peace and stability to be restored in the aforementioned regions.
“I will spare no effort to ensure that this legitimate aspiration to peace is realized. I reiterate my appeal to our young people who have let themselves be dragged into a dead end to return to the right track,” Biya said.
Local authorities said last week Adamawa region was going through its “worst moments” in history with about 150 cases of kidnapping recorded in the region last year.
In the two English-speaking regions of Northwest and Southwest of the largely French-speaking African country, armed separatists have been clashing with government forces to create a nation called “Ambazonia.”

Xinhua