Anglophone armed conflict: several soldiers dead in an Amba attack
Several government troops are reported dead in an attack by Amba fighters in Belo, Boyo division of the North West region of Cameroon as the armed conflict continues.
A contingent of government forces who left Bamenda to Fundong , capital of Boyo division, with the aim of unblocking the road that was blocked by Amba fighters after the action in Big Babanki where some fighters supposedly tortured women for protesting against tax levy, the troops met their Waterloo as they were targeted with Improvised Explosive Devices ( IED) around the bridge linking Belo and Njinikom on May 25th 2023.
The military convoy had succeeded in clearing parts of the blockages from Big Babanki to Mbingo, and was on the second move to clear the blockages from Below to Fundong where the first explosive was detonated by the AMBA fighters.
The fighters had planted two IEDs which they detonated on the military convoy destroying two armoured cars with it’s occupants killed with some in critical condition. According to our reporter in Belo, the first explosive that went off, also caused the destruction of the bridge linking Belo to Njinikom behold repairs, cutting the link between the two sub divisions. The second explosive targeted the convoy rushing to rescue the soldiers that were trapped in the attack on the destroyed bridge, their armour car was again destroyed killing all those inside.
The troops were forced to retreat without being able to unblock the stretch of road Belo to Njinikom after suffering huge casualties. Reports say, on their way back to Bamenda, the troops resulted in torturing anyone they found on the road, on foot or on a motor bike. Stopping all public transport vehicles heading to Belo from Bamenda, the occupants well beaten. Windscreen of many vehicles were broken by the soldiers as they avenged their anger on civilians they met on their way to Bamenda.
The soldiers that died and those in critical condition were airlifted in an helicopter that was sent to backup the troops. The helicopter took a longer time to land due to heavy fighting that ensued between the troops and AMBA fighters. The fighter’s attempt to bring down the helicopter was futile. The helicopter finally airlifted the casualties.
” We saw soldiers crying like babies inside their truck after our bus was stopped, and we were like, what must have happened that soldiers are crying?. All of a sudden, the windscreen of our bus was shattered by one soldier saying in french (Tous les anglophones sont Ambaa), meaning all Anglophones are Ambas. Some of them asked us all to comedown from our bus. That is how they started wiping us with their belts as we descended the bus one after the other.” A passenger narrates what happened.
It should be noted that after the incident of 20th May where Amba fighters supposedly tortured the old women in Big Babanki, and following the SDO of Mezam’s promise to get the perpetrators of the act, troops invaded Big Babanki same night the communicate was issued. Reports from Big Babanki say, the young and old are have all ran into the bushes as their homes are broken into and property looted by the troops. Two houses are reported to have been burnt down as part of the intervention to track the perpetrators of touring the Babanki women.