UNITED KINGDOM: Clerics Invite International Community to Help End Violence in Cameroon


LONDON, OCTOBER 6, 2020 (CISA)-Religious Leaders in the United Kingdom have called for a “robust diplomatic action” to halt the violence and help bring about a negotiated settlement in Cameroon.

“We hear the cry of our sisters and brothers in Cameroon’s Anglophone region, who are facing daily violations of their human dignity. Recent reports of extrajudicial killings, arbitrary detention and attacks on civilians demand a response from the international community,” reads a statement published on the website of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales (CBCEW).

The statement is signed by Rt. Rev. Declan Lang, Bishop of Clifton and Chair, International Affairs department of CBCEW, Rt. Rev. Philip Egan Bishop of Portsmouth, Rev. Richard Teal President of the Methodist Conference, Rt. Rev. Christopher Chessun Lord Bishop of Southwark and Church of England Lead Bishop for International Affairs, Carolyn Lawrence Vice-President of the Methodist Conference and Rt Rev Martin Warner Lord Bishop of Chichester and companion link to the Anglican Diocese of Cameroon.

“We also express our closeness to the churches that are working with local communities to reject violence and pursue the path of dialogue, and we assure them that they have not been forgotten,” the statement adds.

Cameroon has been going through a series of violence since 2016 characterized by clashes between separatists and government. The clashes contributed to about 3,000 deaths and displacement of hundreds of thousands with some fleeing to Nigeria.

In October 2019, President Paul Biya out of pressure from the international community led the country into National Dialogue to address the challenge. The calls were stressed on in a February 2020 letter addressed to the president asking him to hold peace talks with separatists.