Following the gruesome killing of about 15 soldiers in the Northwest region of Cameroon, the Ministry of Defense released a communique on Monday 20 September, recounting the recent tragic incidents and the situation on the ground.
The complete Communique reads: “On the evening of Thursday 16 September, a convoy of the 6th Rapid Intervention Battalion (BIR) on a reconnaissance mission was the target of an ambush of heavily armed terrorists in the Bamessing, Ndop subdivision, Ngoketunjia Division of the Northwest region.
“Using an improvised device (IED) and an anti-tank rocket launcher (ATRL), the insurgents immobilized the vehicles of the defense forces before opening fire on the latter who were seriously incapacitated by the detonation of the explosive charges.
“These events are occurring barely a few days after another improvised explosive attack on another military convoy, on the morning of Sunday, 12 September 2021, on the Kumbo-Tatum axis Kikaikom locality, Kumbo subdivision, Bui Division of the Northwest region.
“The cumulative toll of these attacks is about 15 soldiers and several civilians killed, as well as three vehicles damaged.
“The Minister Delegate at the Presidency in charge of defense, conveys to the families of the fallen soldiers and civilians, the sincere condolences of the Head of State, Commander in chief of the Armed Forces, as well as his wishes of quick recovery to the survivors. It should be recalled that this new attack was, like the previous ones, carried out in contempt of International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
“Similarly, the use of high charge explosives against the defense and Security forces as well as civilian populations in urban and peri-urban areas or even the camouflage in civilian populations or the use of them as human shields is an unspeakable barbarism.
“It should be noted that intelligence services have established with certainty that the resurgence of these terrorist groups by means of the quality of fire-power they have at their disposal and are systematically using, is largely the result of their joining forces with other terrorist entities operating outside the country’s border.
“It is thus clear that the coming into play of high capacity explosives and new weapons undoubtedly enshrines a paradigm change in ongoing operations, with the Defense and Security forces having as mission to do everything to restore peace and guarantee the free movement of persons, goods and capital throughout the national territory.
“In any event, the Cameroonian Army remains determined to eradicate all forms of violence in the Northwest, Southwest and Far North regions, areas in which it is now clearly established that there exist sophisticated arm links and exchanges between secessionist terrorists, from the Northwest and Southwest regions with external violent fundamentalist groups”.