Armed separatists have stepped up attacks against defence and security forces with sophisticated weapons leading to lost of human lives and destruction of vehicles.
The Head of the Communication Division of the Ministry of Defence, Navy Captain Atonfack Guemo Cyrille Serge in a press release on September 20, 2021, reported two attacks on military conveys in the North West Region that cumulatively caused the death of 15 soldiers, several civilians and the damage of three vehicles.
Specifically, on Thursday, September 16, 2021 evening, a convey of the 6th Rapid Intervention Battalion (BIR) on a reconnaissance mission was ambushed by heavily armed terrorists in Bamessing, Ndop Subdivision in Ngoketunjia Division. Before that, another attack on a military convoy took place on Sunday, September 12, 2021 morning at Kikaikom, Kumbo Subdivision of the Bui Division. In the two attacks which are just a tip of the iceberg in the recent wave of attacks by separatist armed groups, the perpetrators used improvised explosive devices. The particular attack in Bamessing portrayed how sophisticated the armed groups had become as they used an anti-tank rocket launcher (ATRL). They immoblised the vehicles of the Defence forces beforing opening heavy fire on them.
The armed groups have stepped up the level of barbarism by using high-charge explosives against the Defence and security forces and civilian population in urban and peri-urban areas, camouflage in civilian populations or using the population as human shields. The press release from the Ministry of Defence cited intelligence services that have established with certainty that the resurgence of the armed groups by means of the quality of fire-power at their disposal and use , is largely the result of their joining forces with other terrorits entities operating outside the Cameroon's borders.
Since the start of the security crisis in the North West and South West Regions, the defence and security forces have been on the field doing everything possible to to carry out their mission which is to restore peace and guarantee the free movement of persons, goods and capital throughout the national territory. A paradigm change in the crisis has therefore set in with the coming to play of high-capacity explosives and new weapons used by the armed separatist groups.
All these call for the readjustment of the response to the crisis in all forms. It is time to go back to the drawing board to map out feasible strategies and means of tackling the crisis so that the people in the two affected regions can once more enjoy the hitherto peace, security, stability and development. Government and its partners and the local population have to mutualise efforts to stop the barbaric acts of the armed separatists.