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Anglophone crisis: Separatists mainly target Mbororo Fulanis, Amnesty reports

Anglophone crisis: Separatists mainly target Mbororo Fulanis, Amnesty reports

Paru le jeudi, 06 juillet 2023 11:56

The Mbororo Fulani community is specifically targeted by armed separatists, Amnesty International says in a report published on July 4 about the Anglophone crisis ongoing in Cameroon. 

"According to figures compiled by the Justice and Dignity Campaign, which monitors offenses specifically targeting Mbororo Fulani individuals in the absence of official data, 30 Mbororo herders were killed by 'Amba' fighters in the Menchum department between 2018 and 2020, 35 in the Ndu sub-division (Donga-Mantung department) between 2018 and 2020, and over 50 in the Nwa sub-division (Donga-Mantung department) between October 2018 and March 2021," reports Amnesty International.

While noting that this does not mean that the Mbororo communities have more victims than others, the international NGO emphasizes that there is a "climate of hostility against Mbororo Fulani." The organization reports that "The Mbororo Fulani as a community have been targeted by discriminatory and inflammatory speech from spokespersons, members, and supporters of separatist groups, according to video, audio, and written documents collected and reviewed by Amnesty International. (...) Mbororo Fulani victims have also frequently reported racist and xenophobic speech during attacks against them by armed separatists."

One of the most dramatic episodes in this climate of hostility is the Ngarbuh massacre in February 2020 when, in retaliation, Mbororo Fulani supported by soldiers attacked a village, killing about fifteen people, including women and children. "Discriminatory speech targeting the Mbororo Fulani escalated after the Ngarbuh killings on 14 February 2020, when it became clear that the Cameroonian army was accompanied by members of a ‘vigilante committee’, mostly Fulani," states Amnesty International.

On the other hand, the report indicates that Mbororo militias have also formed and frequently commit abuses against the population. "Militias composed mostly of armed Mbororo Fulani committed numerous crimes against the population in the North-West region, including murders and the burning of homes, which led to displacements of people," reports the NGO, which lists a series of documented abuses.

The Anglophone crisis began in late 2016 with demands from teachers and lawyers for better recognition of the Anglophone minority. These demands escalated into riots and separatist conflict starting in 2017 in the Northwest and Southwest regions. "Some NGOs have estimated death tolls of up to ‘over 6,000’, but without sources to support these estimates. Unofficial counting of military losses has been conducted by one social media activist who estimated that 1,434 soldiers had been killed as of 26 June 2023 in the armed violence," the Amnesty International report indicates


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