On Sunday night, armed separatists stormed a Presbyterian school in the North West Region of Cameroon and abducted at least 79 students and three staff members, including the principal.
North West Region Gov. Deben Tchoffo said on Monday the students are between the ages of 11 and 17, and were taken from the village of Nkwen, near the regional capital Bamenda. "We have asked our military to do everything and bring back the kids alive," Tchoffo said.
The school is in an English-speaking region. Over the last year, hundreds of people have been killed as separatists clash with Cameroon's French-speaking majority. The Associated Press reports that a video has surfaced that reportedly shows the students, posted by a group of men calling themselves "Amba Boys." This is in reference to Ambazonia, the name of the state the separatists want to set up in the North West and South West regions of Cameroon. On the video, one man is heard saying, "We shall only release you after the struggle. You will be going to school now here." Catherine Garcia