Oct 17 , 2019
New Delhi, India
The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) has urged Commonwealth Secretary General Patricia Scotland to continue using her good offices to encourage the Cameroonian authorities to adopt further confidence-building and reconciliation measures during that country’s National Dialogue.
While CHRI is encouraged by the decision of President Paul Biya on 4 October to release Maurice Kamto, leader of the Mouvement pour la Renaissance du Cameroun (MRC), as well as 102 members of the party, and to begin what he called a “National Dialogue” earlier this month which was attended by key religious leaders, many representatives of civil society boycotted it since the suggestions they had made were ignored.
There is an escalating humanitarian crisis in Cameroon where more than half a million people have been displaced by conflict over the past years as a result of the “Anglophone” crisis. The U.N. office for the coordination of humanitarian affairs has said that the separatist war has forced more than 530,000 people to flee their homes since the conflict erupted in late 2017. Ongoing armed clashes, civilian casualties and the burning of houses, hospitals and other infrastructure are causing further displacements.
“We urge the expansion of the dialogue to involve other groups including exiles (and assurance of protection to them), so that the efforts for reconciliation becomes impactful and sustainable,” said Mina Mensah, CHRI’s Head of Office for Africa, based in Accra, Ghana.
For more information, please contact:
Sanjoy Hazarika, International Director, CHRI