Eight killed in Cameroon's volatile anglophone region

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Six civilians and two police officers were killed in Cameroon's volatile English-speaking South West Region, where violence has mounted ahead of next month's presidential vote, sources close to security services and locals said.

On the night of Wednesday to Thursday, two police officers were killed and a policewoman injured on the outskirts of the beach resort town of Limbe in an area housing anglophone separatists, the source said.

"The attackers took the victims by surprise while they were on duty," the source. The attackers had fled with two weapons, the source added.

In nearby Buea, the capital of the South West Region, police shot dead six civilians and wounded another Thursday, witnesses said.

The incident was corroborated by a security source in the Cameroon capital Yaounde.

Declaration of independence

Soldiers and separatists also exchanged gunfire in Bamenda, the main city in the North West Region, another anglophone area, the source said.

Cameroon's two minority English-speaking regions - the North-West and South-West - have been hit by almost daily unrest that have left at least 400 dead this year, according to the International Crisis Group.

Years of resentment at perceived discrimination at the hands of the Cameroon's French-speaking majority led to a declaration of independence by separatists that sparked a government crackdown.

Anglophone separatists have said that voting will not take place in the two regions on October 7.

At the October poll, eight candidates are running against the 85-year-old incumbent Paul Biya, who has ruled the country for 35 years and is seeking a seventh straight term in office.

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