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Cameroon opposition leader Maurice Kamto ‘charged with insurrection’

Cameroon’s main opposition leader, Maurice Kamto, has been charged with insurrection, his lawyers say.

Cameroon's main opposition leader, Maurice Kamto
Cameroon’s main opposition leader, Maurice Kamto

If found guilty, Mr Kamto, who was arrested on Monday, could face a prison term of five years to life, the BBC’s Killian Ngala Chimtom reports.

The Cameroon Renaissance Movement (MRC) leader lost to long-time ruler Paul Biya in last year’s presidential poll.

His party organised protests in four cities over the weekend, saying the election result was rigged.

The vote in October was marred by violence especially in the two English-speaking provinces, which have been hit by more than a year of violent protests and attacks by separatist rebels which have left hundreds dead.

Mr Kamto, who was detained in Doula along with 200 other protesters, could face further charges, including those of holding illegal gatherings and disturbing the peace.

Christopher Ndong, Mr Kamto’s lawyer, said his client denied the charges and that his right to the freedom of speech had been infringed.

Mr Kamto had been simply exercising his right to protest, he said.

“The government clampdown will not frighten anybody,” Mr Ndong added.

According to the AFP news agency, further marches, scheduled for Friday, Saturday and next week, have been banned by the authorities for the “preservation of public order”. BBC