Cameroon: Death Toll in Cameroon Conflict Leaps to 1 800

Yaounde — THE crisis in Cameroon has been lamented as the fastest displacement tragedy in Africa following the worsening bloodshed in the English-speaking regions and attacks by the Boko Haram terror group.

Some 1 800 people have been killed in the western regions during the past few months as communities demand autonomy from the government dominated by French speakers. Government has reacted with brutality while separatists have also intensified their campaign.

The majority of women have reportedly been raped.

Over 500 000 people have been displaced and 700 000 children prevented from attending school.

David Miliband, Chief Executive Officer of the international Rescue Committee (IRC) described the crisis as the worst displacement problem in the continent.

"The international community must make joint efforts in humanitarian aid," he said at the end of his mission to the Central African country.

"Without a radical change in the internal political dynamic, a generalised civil war is sadly at stake," Miliband warned.

Education Cannot Wait, a non-profit organisation, this week allocated US$2,7 million to support the emergency education response.

The re-election of President Paul Biya in 2018 has aggravated the Cameroon crisis.

In power since 1982, critics accuse him of heading an administration that marginalizes English speakers, who make up 20 percent of the country's estimated population of 25 million.

His government faces a rising threat by the Boko Haram from neighbouring Nigeria.

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