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Cameroon anglophone journalist charged with promotion of terrorism

Cameroon anglophone journalist charged with promotion of terrorism


Cameroonian anglophone newspaper journalist Atia Tilarious Azohnwi has been charged with promotion of terrorism after his arrest in February.

He was charged by a military tribunal in the capital Yaounde on Friday, July 14, 2017, local media reported.

According to local media, he was arrested on February 9 upon a tip-off that he was in possession of bags containing flyers with messages allegedly meant to destabilize the two anglophone regions of Cameroon.

Azohnwi, who works for The Sun newspaper was arrested from his residence in Buea on February 9, together with two other journalists – Amos Fofung of The Guardian Post newspaper and Mofor Ndong, publisher of the Voice of the Voiceless newspaper.

The two, whose charges are not yet known, were transferred together with Azohnwi to the main Kondengui Prison in the capital after their arrest.

At least eight journalists are reported to have been arrested during the crisis in the anglophone regions late last year when Cameroonians took to the streets demanding equal treatment.

At least six people were shot dead, hundreds arrested and internet was cut off for three months in the region.

They are being held under anti-terrorism laws enacted as part of the battle against Islamist Boko Haram militants in the north.

Media rights group Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) had unsuccessfully demanded reasons for the arrest and detention of the journalists.

The country’s media regulator had earlier issued a directive threatening to punish press organs broadcasting speeches favoring separatism or federalism ideas being pushed by leaders of the minority group.

Cameroon’s military tribunal in Yaounde has detained three leaders of the English-speaking regions – Lawyer Felix Nkongho, Professor Fontem Neba as well as radio host Mancho Bibixy – who are also being held on charges of complicity in hostility against the homeland, secession, civil war, and campaigning for federalism.

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