The United Kingdom has waded into the tensed Cameroon crisis with a call to both the government and Anglophone population to dialogue and address the root causes of the problem.
The UK Minister for Africa, Rory Stewart said in a statement on Wednesday that both parties should restrain from actions that can deepen the crisis.
“We urge all sides to create conditions to restore confidence, avoid provocative rhetoric and acts, and to ensure any action by security forces is proportionate, fully respecting human rights, and in the best interests of protecting people and property,” he said.
“We encourage the parties to reject violence, embrace dialogue and to urgently take action to implement solutions that address the root causes and grievances being raised,” he added.
Stewart expressed concern about the deaths and injuries in the two Anglophone regions caused by repression of protesters by the security services.
Ahead of the October 1 celebration of the unification of the Anglophone regions with the French Cameroun, the government deployed the military to the South West and North West regions to quell planned proclamation of independence by secessionist groups in the regions.
Gatherings were banned, internet and social media were blocked and public places were closed down.
Amnesty International said 17 people were killed during the repression on the said date while over 200 were arrested.
Internet connection was restored on Tuesday but the blockade on social media was maintained.
The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also condemned the violence and called for dialogue.