A researcher of Human Rights Watch was denied entry into Cameroon on April 12, 2019, the organisation has said.
Human Rights Watch accused the government of Cameroon of trying to “curb reports of abuse by security forces” but said it “will continue to document and publicize human rights violations in Cameroon.”
“Denying entry to our researcher is a clear step back for Cameroon,” said Philippe Bolopion, deputy global advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. “The government is doing everything it can to keep the world in the dark about its ongoing abuses, but it won’t succeed.”
Human Rights Watch said officials at the Douala International Airport refused to grant entry to senior researcher for Central Africa Ilaria Allegrozzi despite receiving a three-month visa on March 25. She was given no explanation by authorities at the airport and have since not received any clarifications from the government despite several attempts, Human Rights Watch said.
Allegrozzi explained in her visa application that she planned to travel to the Anglophone regions of the country to conduct research for Human Rights Watch on abuses committed by both government and armed separatist forces, as well as the impact of the crisis on people with disabilities, HR Watch said.
Human Rights Watch has published a series of reports on human rights violations by government and separatist fighters in the conflict-hit Anglophone regions of the country.
It recently published a report accusing members of Cameroon defense and security forces for carrying out an attack in Meluf, Bui Division of the North West region that left at least four persons dead.
The government of Cameroon however denied the reports insisting it was unaware of any such attacks in Meluf and said the had only destroyed places serving as hideouts for separatist fighters.