As EPP negotiator, Zovko calls upon Cameroon to respect human rights
Strasbourg 18 April,
The European mandate is almost over and the last plenary session in Strasbourg is about to finish. Nevertheless, the Members of the European Parliament show their commitment to their duties. Today, the EP adopted a motion that calls upon the government of Cameroon and the separatist activists to stop the violent actions and infringements of human rights in the country. MEP Željana Zovko acted as negotiator of the motion for the EPP and sat together with the other parties to find a strong common text to address these atrocities.
During the debate on the issue, she pointed at the numerous reports from human rights monitors that have documented the excessive use of force. Several members of an opposition party, including its leader, Maurice Kamto, and a large number of protesters and sympathisers are arbitrarily imprisoned. Ms Zovko also emphasised that the authorities of Cameroon have repeatedly restricted the freedom of expression by shutting down the internet and harassing and detaining journalists.
According to Ms Zovko, The EU should demand the authorities of Cameroon to immediately and unconditionally release all political opponents and any other citizen who has been detained solely for political purposes. Furthermore, Zovko urged to condemn the use of excessive force and violations of the freedoms of expression and stress and request an independent and transparent investigation into these violating actions.
“Looking at our own possibilities,” Zovko said, “the EU can also make a difference. We should take advantage of the political leverage provided by development aid programmes to enhance the defence of human rights in Cameroon.”