Africa

Tear gas fired at Cameroon protesters

Multiple reports indicate that tear gas has been fired at people taking part in opposition protests in Cameroon’s biggest city, Douala.

Reporter Regina Sondo shared this footage minutes ago.

A nationwide call for anti-government protests was made by the MRC/CRM party.

But a heavy security presence has been reported in recent days and the government is accused by Human Rights Watch and other groups of cracking down on dissent.

A top official of Cameroon’s opposition CRM party has said that a number of anti-government demonstrators have been targeted by security forces in the biggest city, Douala.

“Peaceful protesters have been shot at, arrested, brutalised and tear-gassed,” said Barrister Christopher Ndong, the first vice-president of the party.

A journalist working for private-owned newspaper La Nouvelle Expression was among those arrested in the capital, Yaoundé. Unverified reports suggest that dozens of CRM activists were arrested there on Tuesday morning.

The police have not responded to the BBC’s request for comment.

Anti-government demonstrators have taken to the streets in several towns and cities, including Douala, Yaounde, Bafang, and Baham – the hometown of CRM leader Maurice Kamto, in the west of the country.

They have been calling for an end to the Anglophone crisis and a reform of the electoral code.

Mr Kamto has suggested if the two issues are not addressed, the protests will continue until President Paul Biya is forced from power.

Mr Biya has been in power since 1982. He was re-elected in 2018 in an election that Mr Kamto claimed he won.

Government spokesman Rene Emmanuel Sadi has criticised the opposition leader, saying that the protests were the weapon of a politician who cannot win an election. -BBC

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