Cameroon rebels declare coronavirus ceasefire

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A separatist militia in Cameroon is to down its weapons for a fortnight so people can be tested for coronavirus.

The Southern Cameroons Defence Forces (Socadef) said its ceasefire would come into effect from Sunday as “a gesture of goodwill”.

It is so far the only armed group among many operating in Cameroon’s English-speaking regions to have heeded the UN’s call for a global ceasefire.

The fighters say they are marginalised in the majority French-speaking nation.

For the three years, they have been fighting government forces in the Anglophone regions with the aim of creating a breakaway state called “Ambazonia”.

But there is no indication that one of the biggest rebel group – Ambazonia Defence Forces (ADF) – is to follow suit and declare a ceasefire.

Chief mediator Alexandre Liebeskind, from the conflict resolution group Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, told the BBC that the ADF had refused to join the negotiations.

“They are the only group which refused to join the process,” he said.

But he added that he hoped other groups would follow Socadef’s example.

Source: BBC Africa

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