Antonio Guterres
Antonio Guterres

The United Nations wants the authorities in Cameroon to begin an investigation into reports of serious human rights violations, including a shocking video allegedly showing the brutal murder of a woman, a UN spokesman said on Friday.

“We strongly and unequivocally condemn this atrocious act of violence,” said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

“We call on the authorities to swiftly launch an investigation into these allegations, and to ensure that those responsible are brought to justice,” the spokesman said.

“We call on armed actors to refrain from attacks against civilians, to respect international humanitarian and international human rights law.”

The Cameroonian army said Thursday that its troops have captured three armed separatists suspected of murdering the woman in Muyuka, a locality in the troubled region of Southwest.

The woman was kidnapped, brutalized, and beheaded on Tuesday by armed separatists who accused her of conniving with government forces to leak their hideouts. The murder was widely condemned in Cameroon after the suspects filmed the gruesome act and posted the video online.

Separatists have been seeking to secede from the majority French-speaking Cameroon and create an independent nation in the two Anglophone regions of Northwest and Southwest which they call “Ambazonia.” They have been clashing with government forces since 2017.

“We reiterate the readiness of the United Nations to work with all stakeholders toward a political solution to the crisis in the Northwest and Southwest of Cameroon through meaningful dialogue,” said Dujarric.

More than 700,000 Cameroonians have been displaced internally and externally due to the fighting, according to the United Nations.

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