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5 officials of Cameroon’s main opposition kidnapped in restive Anglophone region

YAOUNDE, Jan. 9 (Xinhua) — Five officials of Cameroon’s main opposition party, the Social Democratic Front (SDF), have been abducted in Tubah, a locality in Northwest, one of the two troubled Anglophone regions of the country, party officials said on Thursday.

Among those kidnapped were the SDF district chairman of Tubah, Peter Tabah and four other senior officials of the party.

Armed separatists who claimed responsibility for the abduction released a video of the kidnapped officials on social media on Thursday, stating that the hostages will remain in their keeping until after general elections scheduled for February.

SDF has demanded their “safe and sound” release with “immediate effect”. Local police said a search and rescue mission of the hostages is underway.

Cameroon will hold municipal and parliamentary elections on Feb. 9, but separatists have vowed to disrupt the elections in the Anglophone regions of Northwest and Southwest where they want to create an independent nation.

Over 30 English-speaking candidates in the elections have resigned amid the separatist threats and attacks on them and their property.

The SDF is deeply rooted in the English-speaking part of the country that has been facing the separatist conflict since 2017. In December, two mayors and 19 municipal councillors of the party were abducted by separatists in Northwest and later released. Enditem

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