Seventy-nine students were removed this Monday, on the eve of the swearing-in of president Paul Biya, in the North West region of Cameroon, the most important kidnapping in this area, English-speaking since the beginning of the conflict with separatist armed. In addition to the students, the principal of the Presbyterian Secondary School in Bamenda (regional capital), a teacher and a driver were also abducted by unidentified armed men, said a government source.

“the search to locate The hostages have been launched, the engagement is total,” added the source who was speaking after a crisis meeting. “The establishment is encircled by the security forces. We do not have access to,” said a source close to the establishment.

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president Biya, 85, in power since 1982, was recently re-elected to a seventh term with 71,28% of the votes. He must take the oath Tuesday. In the two English-speaking regions of the North-West and South-West, a socio-political crisis of unprecedented scope was installed at the end of 2016. She is transformed by the end of 2017 in armed conflict. Clashes between the army and separatists, grouped in scattered groups in the equatorial forest, occur there almost every day for several months. The separatists have declared a boycott of the schools, primarily in French, finding that the school system marginalizes English-speaking students.

Many of the attacks

The attacks of separatists armed the schools are many since the beginning of the conflict. In mid-October, six students had been abducted in an attack on secondary school in Bamenda, according to several sources. The authorities had denied. On the day of the new school year in early September, a school principal had been murdered, a professor’s mangled and several secondary schools attacked. The armed conflict has intensified in the region of the North-West after several months of calm, the clashes are concentrated during the summer in the South-West region.

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on The 30th of October, an american missionary was shot and killed in his vehicle in Bambui, on the outskirts of Bamenda. The reasons for his murder remain unknown, but the State has accused the “terrorists” to be the cause of his death as Washington spoke of “crossfire”. More than 175 members of the defence forces and security in cameroon have lost their lives in this conflict, as well as more than 400 civilians, according to the NGOS. In the area, more than 300,000 people have fled the violence, for the vast majority in the bush and in the big cities of the neighbouring regions, and for some, Nigeria’s neighbour.

In the two English-speaking regions, the rate of participation in the presidential election of 7 October, was very low (5% in the North-West and 15% in the South-West), but Paul Biya is obtained in each of more than two-thirds of the votes cast.

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Paul Biya re-elected president of the Cameroon – Watch on Figaro Live