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    Boko Haram Violence in Central Africa (77)
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    Cameroon’s army is losing its strength and morale in its attempt to stop cross-border incursions by Boko Haram. At the same time, the militant group is gaining power as it captures heavy weaponry.

    MOSCOW, December 2 (Sputnik) — Boko Haram is rapidly becoming a regional threat and the battle against the Nigerian Islamist group is meant to be a large-scale regional campaign, however, for Cameroon’s soldier on a desperate frontline, AFP reports.

    "We are fed up with fighting this war all alone," a Cameroonian officer said, describing the fight with Boko Haram and the lack of military support.

    "The attacks against our territory come from a neighboring country, which calls itself sovereign and does nothing," said a defense ministry official who asked not to be named, as quoted be AFP.

    The official also complained that Cameroon has been drawn into a "proxy war" against Boko Haram, which intensified violence in villages in Cameroon’s far north and in Nigeria.

    Last Friday, suspected Boko Haram militants conducted a suicide bomb and attack on the central mosque in the Nigerian city of Kano killing at least 120 people.

    Nigerian soldiers stand guard at the offices of the state-run Nigerian Television Authority in Maiduguri, Nigeria. Archive photo.
    © AP Photo / Jon Gambrell, File
    Cameroon’s army is losing its strength and morale in its attempt to check cross-border incursions by Boko Haram. Such a task is hard because the militants continue to grow in strength and ambition. "Each time Boko Haram captures a town in Nigeria, it recovers all the military equipment there. So now they really have heavy weaponry," a source in the intelligence services said, as cited by AFP.

    In mid-October, Islamists equipped with a tank and a booby-trapped car bomb sieged an army position in Amchide. The fighting left 107 Boko Haram members and eight Cameroonian soldiers dead.

    "We are on our own at the front," said a commander of the elite Israeli-trained Rapid Intervention Brigade.

    In northeastern Nigeria, Boko Haram controls large swathes of territory abandoned by the authorities, leaving local residents to the mercy of fate.

    In Amchide, Cameroonian troops face the enemy, which positioned itself around the far end of a bridge marking the border. Boko Haram routed Nigerian forces, and now the militants are only separated from Cameroonian soldiers by a deserted no man’s land.

    In August, 500 Nigerian troops crossed into Cameroon, but the army command reported the soldiers were "charging through the borders in a tactical maneuver", according to AFP.

    The Cameroonian army is getting used to seeing Nigerian soldiers arriving, but for a quite different purpose – fleeing Boko Haram.

    Meanwhile, Cameroon has come under criticism from neighbouring countries and former colonial power France for not taking measures to stop Boko Haram from using its territory as a support base for its war in Nigeria.

    Topic:
    Boko Haram Violence in Central Africa (77)

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    Tags:
    terrorism, Boko Haram, Nigeria, Cameroon
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