On Tuesday, November 7, two police officers were killed in Bamenda (Northwest region) by suspected Anglophone secessionists. According to local sources, gunmen attacked and killed the police officers before fleeing. Another attack took place on Monday, November 6, when a police officer was also killed by suspected secessionist militants in the town of Jakiri (Northwest region).
Tensions remain high in the Anglophone regions, and there is a likelihood of large scale protests. Restrictions on movement, including 24-hour curfews, may be implemented with little warning and result in travel disruptions.
Simmering resentment that dates back to the period of independence has resurged within the minority Anglophone community in Cameroon over the past year, sparked by the central government's decision in November 2016 to not translate a law into English. The period since November 2016 has been marked by the closure of all English-speaking schools, strikes, unrest, and sporadic violence. Tensions between English and French-speaking communities have escalated considerably in recent months. While some protesters have called for independence for Anglophone Cameroon, others conversely demand better integration and an end to the political and economic marginalization of the region.
The government has responded with a heightened security presence and the implementation of curfews with little warning. The recent unrest has prompted the US Embassy in Yaoundé to advise its citizens and embassy staff to defer all nonessential travel to the Southwest and Northwest regions. Similarly, on September 29, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) released a travel warning advising against all travel to the Bakassi Peninsula and all nonessential travel to Bamenda in Northwest region and Buea in Southwest region.
Individuals in Cameroon are advised to closely monitor the situation, adhere to advice issued by local authorities or their home governments, and any protests or large gatherings due to the risk of associated violence.
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