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Justice for Civilians Murdered by Cameroon Soldiers

Four Cameroonian soldiers were sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison for the execution-style killings of two women and their children, one of them a baby, in a region where the army is fighting jihadists. A fifth soldier received a two-year sentence. A video broadcast on social media in July 2018 showed soldiers shooting two kneeling, blindfolded women as well as a baby on one of their backs and a girl. The government initially denied the army’s involvement, dismissing the video as “fake news”. But after Amnesty International provided credible evidence, the authorities announced that the seven soldiers seen in the video had been arrested and would be prosecuted. Two were later acquitted. The killings took place in 2015 in Zeleved, in Cameroon’s Far North region where troops have been deployed to fight Boko Haram jihadists carrying out cross-border attacks from Nigeria. The military court in the capital Yaounde finally handed down the murder verdict and sentences after repeated adjournments of the trial.