|[Published: Wednesday September 11 2019]
Cameroon to hold 'dialogue' on separatists
YAOUNDE 11 Sep (ANA) - Cameroon's President Paul Biya has said in a rare public address that he is organising a "national dialogue" for the end of the month on all the crises facing the country, including violence that has killed thousands in its Anglophone regions.
The 86-year-old on Tuesday night also called on all separatists in the English-speaking regions to surrender and be forgiven, or face military action.
Before Biya's address late on Tuesday, there were expectations that the president might grant amnesty to arrested separatists and political leaders as a way to bring peace to the country.
But Biya, who has been in power since 1982, said he already has made great efforts trying to solve the separatist crisis and denied any marginalisation of the English-speaking regions, saying he has always appointed ministers from there.
"We should all know that we are Cameroonians, appointed to serve Cameroon, not our tribes or linguistic groups," Biya said.
"In spite of the attempts to destabilise Cameroon, we are happy that our defence forces have fought hard and peace is gradually returning to the restive regions," Biya said.
While announcing his plan for dialogue presided over by Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute, Biya did not specify if representatives for the separatiss would be invited to participate to the talks. He said it was difficult to know who to talk with as people claiming to be separatist leaders use only social media platforms to preach violence.(ANA)
FA/ANA/11 September 2019----