In a tragic incident, separatist rebels launched an assault on Egbekaw village in western Cameroon, resulting in the deaths of approximately 20 individuals, including women and children. The attack took place in one of Cameroon’s restive anglophone regions, known for the ongoing clashes between rebels and government forces. This act of violence, which occurred overnight, has been deemed intolerable by Minister at the Presidency, Mengot Victor Arrey-Nkongho.
The conflict in Cameroon’s primarily English-speaking Northwest and Southwest regions stems from grievances over perceived discrimination and the declaration of independence by separatists in 2017. The attackers, described as “terrorists,” employed both firearms and traditional weapons, causing extensive damage to homes and leaving many wounded. President Paul Biya, who has been in power for 41 years, has resisted calls for greater autonomy and responded with a crackdown, resulting in a dire humanitarian crisis.
The attack on Egbekaw village took place amidst preparations for a meeting of the ruling Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (RDPC) in the area, raising concerns of a potential connection between the violence and the anniversary of Biya assuming the presidency. While both separatist rebels and government forces have been accused of committing atrocities, no specific group has claimed responsibility for the Egbekaw attack.