Gunmen shot dead a journalist late on Sunday in Bamenda, a city in Cameroon’s troubled northwest region, the local journalists’ union said, in at least the third killing of a media worker in the country this year.
Anye Nde Nsoh, the West and Northwest region bureau chief for weekly newspaper the Advocate, was in a pub in Bamenda’s Ntarikon neighborhood when unidentified assailants opened fire on him, said colleague Melanie Ndefru, who was close to the scene of the attack.
Earlier this year, a radio presenter and a journalist were killed in two separate attacks in or near the capital Yaounde, prompting the United Nations to express concern about the media environment.
The Cameroon Association of English-Speaking Journalists (CAMASEJ) confirmed Nsoh’s death and called for an investigation.
“This latest attack on a journalist is one too many. The long-drawn conflict in the northwest and southwest regions has pitched journalists into grave danger,” said CAMASEJ President Jude Viban.
A spokesperson for the regional authorities said they were not aware of the attack. There has been no claim of responsibility so far.
However, on Monday, a press release from the Mezam Senior Divisional Officer,Simon Emile Mooh noted that the journalist was killed by a “group of armed terrorists in Ntarikon, Bamenda II. The SDO went on to “ to condemn in very strong terms this latest despicable, unacceptableand heinous act of violence against a journalist”.
Nsoh’s death came amid a conflict between Cameroonian authorities and some separatist factions in English-speaking regions that turned violent in 2017.
Thousands of people have been killed in the fighting between armed separatists and government troops, with atrocities committed on both sides.