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23 Dec 2019 | 07:15 AM UTC

Cameroon: Boko Haram reportedly kidnap 15 people in Lake Chad area December 22

Suspected Boko Haram militants kidnap 15 fishermen in Lake Chad area (Far North region) on December 22; further attacks possible in the short term

security
CMR

Event

According to security sources, suspected Boko Haram militants kidnapped at least 15 fishermen in the Lake Chad area (Far North region) in the evening (local time) on Sunday, December 22. As of Monday, December 23, the victims' whereabouts remain unknown. Further such attacks are possible in the area in the near-term.

Context

Although regional counterinsurgency efforts begun in 2015 and led by West African states Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, and Niger have diminished Boko Haram's effective territorial control, Amnesty International recently showed concerns about the resurgence of terrorist attacks in the area. Boko Haram's stronghold remains in northeastern Nigeria and the majority of its activities are concentrated in this area. However, the Far North region of Cameroon, especially areas along the Nigerian border, also regularly experiences attacks; the group's presence in Far North dates back to at least 2011.

Advice

Individuals present in Cameroon are advised to limit time in areas deemed particularly likely to be targeted in a terrorist attack (crowded markets, etc.) and report any suspicious objects or behavior to the relevant authorities. Some Western governments advise against travel to the Far North region, as well as other areas bordering Nigeria, Chad, and the Central African Republic; travel to these areas should only be considered with appropriate security protocols in place.