Over 10,000 people have fled from English speaking regions of Cameroon to neighboring Nigeria in recent weeks. They are escaping an ongoing crackdown by Cameroonian security forces against a movement that is demanding greater autonomy for English speaking regions from the French dominated central government.
In Cameroon, the struggle for more equal political rights and power by English speaking regions is a longstanding issue. It’s commonly known as “the Anglophone problem.” Over the past couple of years an Anglophone protest movement has gained increased strength and visibility. And over the past several months the government response to this movement has become increasingly violent and draconian. Meanwhile, some fringe splinter groups have decided to take up arms against the government.
This potentially brewing conflict is an off-the-radar crisis that does not attract a great deal of attention, but has both significant regional and global implications.
On the line with me to explain what is going on in Cameroon and why we should be paying attention to these developments is Yonatan L. Morse, Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Connecticut. He explains how this crisis is rooted in Cameroon’s unique post-colonial history and why these long simmering tensions are now boiling over
This is a great conversation–and I was happy to be able to shine a spotlight on this important, but perhaps overlooked issue.