Court Of Appeal Adjourns Case Of 10 Separatist Leaders In Cameroon

A court of appeal in Yaoundé, the capital of Cameroon, on Thursday, adjourned to August 20, 2020, the case of 10 separatist leaders detained.

In January 2018, the head of the movement, Julius Sisiku Ayuk Tabe was arrested with 46 other separatists in a hotel in the Nigerian capital, Abuja by Nigerian special forces. They were then handed over to Cameroon.

Ayuk Tabe, and nine of his followers were convicted on August 2019 of charges including terrorism and secession and given a fine of $350m (£286m) after an all-night sitting by the court.

The presiding judge adjourned the appeal on Thursday, July 16, 2020, following a protest from their lawyers who said the court was trying to try their clients in a language they did not understand, when the judge who spoke in French called the names of the defendants.

Government forces and armed separatists have been clashing since 2017 in Cameroon’s two English-speaking regions of Northwest and Southwest where separatists want to establish an independent nation known as Ambazonia.

The United Nations says the fighting in the English-speaking  regions has cost more than 3,000 lives and displaced more than half a million people.

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