Cameroon’s army on Monday denied opposition charges that it had massacred villagers in a restive anglophone region, blaming instead an “unfortunate accident” caused by an explosion of fuel during a firefight.
Up to 22 civilians, 14 of them children, died in the incident on Friday, according to the United Nations — deaths which opposition parties blamed on members of the armed forces.
But army spokesman Colonel Cyrille Atonfack Guemo described the allegations as “duplicitous”.
An army investigation found that the deaths happened when fuel exploded in an exchange of gunfire with anglophone separatists and caused a fire, he said.
Five civilians — a woman and four children — died, and “seven terrorists” were “neutralised,” Atonfack told AFP in Libreville by phone.