A Cameroonian soldier, who was in a joint military operation with the Nigerian Army, has been killed by a landmine planted by Boko Haram, a newspaper reported.
Cameroonian newspaper, L’Oeil du Sahel, reported that the soldier was killed in the Nigerian locality of Kumshe in Borno state, when his vehicle climbed a landmine believed to have been planted by Boko Haram.
The newspaper did not name the soldier, but roughly 150 soldiers and policemen have been killed in Cameroon in the three-year battle against the ruthless terrorists Nigerian President once called “the godless, mindless” militants.
The Nigerian government declared last December that Boko Haram’s fortified camp in the once dreaded Sambis aforest had fallen and the terrorists had been defeated.
The upbeat announcement was believed to have come to symbolise the end of a terror organisation that pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in March 2015 and has since modelled its barbarism after the Middle East killers, staging bloody suicide bombings and brazen mass kidnaps. However, renewed attacks against Nigerian and Cameroonian troops in recent months are a clear indication that Abubakar Shekau and Musa al-Barnawi men are far from being defeated.
In Cameroon, about 500 attacks, including over 50 suicide bombings, have killed close to 2000 people and displaced hundreds of thousands in the country’s far north. Only yesterday, reports said the terrorists invaded a region around the once famous but now deserted Waza park and kidnapped the son of a village head. Two other persons were still missing.
That region is the most impoverished in the country, a breeding ground for Boko Haram recruiters who often use extremist Islamic teachings with hard to come cash to attract young men who had already been abandoned by their country.
President Paul Biya of Cameroon, who has been in power since 1982 has not set foot in the war zone, even though the war has lasted more than three years, and even though thousands of his countrymen have been killed and hundreds of thousands remain displaced.
And when the corpses of about 38 soldiers killed by Boko Haram were brought to the country’s capital, Mr. Biya did not even attend their burial to show care and respect.
For a President who spends many months abroad every year at at over 80 years old, encouraging soldiers dying for the country is the least of his priorities.
Months ago, after English speaking Cameroonians took to the street to demand equality and justice, the government reacted by beating up protesters, including senior lawyers, and by locking many up. Videos posted on the social media showed how harmless civilians staging peaceful protests were kicked, hit, punched and thrown into dirty truck to unknown locations.
When that brutish tactic failed, he simply ordered telecommunication companies to swift off the Internet.
It’s been total darkness in Cameroon’s Northwest and Southwest for months, a total blackout in a region filled with millions of people.