The remaining four people who had been kidnapped on October 31 and November 4 from the Presbyterian Secondary School in Bamenda (Northwest region) - one teacher, the principal, and two students - were released on Monday, November 12. The circumstances behind their release remain unclear. Anglophone separatists are suspected of being behind the kidnappings although they have denied it. Further such incidents are possible in the near-term as tensions between Anglophone separatists and the government become increasingly volatile.
Ninety other students kidnapped on the same days were released on November 6.
Tensions between the country's minority English-speaking community and the national authorities are high in the Northwest and Southwest regions amid an ongoing separatist movement. The period since November 2016 has been marked by the closure of English-speaking schools, strikes, unrest, and violence. These tensions have escalated considerably since October 2017, when secessionists unilaterally proclaimed independence in the region. The fighting has forced tens of thousands of civilians to flee over the border into Nigeria.
Separatists have called for a boycott of all schools in the two regions since the beginning of the conflict.
Individuals in Northwest and Southwest regions are advised to closely monitor the situation, follow all instructions issued by the local authorities (particularly curfews), and avoid protests or large gatherings due to the risk of associated violence.
Copyright and Disclaimer