Cameroonian troops are at it again! Nigerian villagers in Gwadale border community in Gwoza local government area of Borono State, presented a claim on Tuesday reporting that troops of the Cameroonian Armed Forces shot and killed not less than 40 innocent civilians in a cross-border hot chase of the Boko Haram Islamic group members believed to have fled to Nigeria in an incident which took place on Monday.
This occurrence makes it the third and the latest of several reports accusing the military of neighboring Cameroon of killing scores of Nigerian civilians in a clear attempt to create a no-go zone along the border, bringing the total number of casualties to nearly 200 harmless civilians.
In an information shared by the deputy commander of a civilian self-defense group and former ward secretary of Ashigashiya, Muhammad Abba, on Tuesday, he said that in a call put across to him by his relatives who are still stuck in the border community, he was informed that they counted about 40 bodies of people strewn all over the border community of Gwadale who died as a result of bullets shot indiscriminately by Cameroonian military troops supposedly chasing Boko Haram suspects. He said,
“I still have my family, including my eldest son, there in Gwadale. But those that called me yesterday using the Cameroonian mobile network said most of the corpses are still left unattended.
“One of my brothers who survived the shootout said the Cameroonian soldiers arrived Gwadale in early hours of Monday, and began to shoot sporadically. Most of our people who ran out of their houses in fear were killed by bullets; up till now, as they said, corpses still litter the grounds with no one attending to them, because those remaining in the village are aged men and women.
“I have not heard from my eldest son since the attack; and those that called said they had ran into Ashigashiya.”
The spokesman of the Vigilante Group of Nigeria, who is also a native of the attacked Gwoza local government area, validated the incident saying that, “our people are being killed by Boko Haram and Cameroonian soldiers, yet our government is watching.”
Just last week, Ashigashiya village suffered the attack of Cameroonian Army on Monday, 18th January, 2016. According to the reports of some villagers, Cameroonian troops chasing after suspected Boko Haram recklessly fired rocket-propelled grenades one of which exploded through the grass roof of a hut and killed a family of four people, then shot and killed two civilians.
Muhammad Abba also said that the troop dragged two elderly men away and shot them outside the village while villagers have been stuck between the ruthless Cameroonian troops and the Boko Haram area of operation.
In a similar incident which took place on Sunday, 20th December 2015, fleeing villagers reported that Cameroonian soldiers came into Kirawa-Jimni village, a border town close to Cameroon, situated around the area where Boko Haram terrorists declared a caliphate in August 2014, asking them where the Boko Haram insurgents were before opening fire.
According to the deputy commander of the civilian self-defense group;
“We didn’t know what was going on but the Cameroonian troops suddenly appeared and began to ask us for Boko Haram terrorists. Before we could say a word, they started firing. That scared most of us and we began to run. By the time people returned on Monday, we found 70 corpses littering the ground.”
While the government of Nigeria is yet to make any official comment on the reports, Cameroon has said that they follow strict humanitarian rules of war as they work in joint operations with the Nigerian Army.