'Islamist militants' kill 10 in northern Cameroon

Armed Cameroonian men of the rapid intervention battalion (BIR) patrol on 29 May 2014 in Waza, northern Cameroon. Image copyright AFP
Image caption Cameroon has stepped up security on its border with Nigeria in the wake of recent militant attacks

Militants with suspected ties to Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram have killed 10 people in a raid on a remote village in north Cameroon, police say.

Nine bus passengers and a soldier were shot dead after coming "face-to-face" with heavily armed militants in Zigague, they add.

The son of a local chief was kidnapped in the attack, local media reports.

Boko Haram, based in north-eastern Nigeria, has intensified cross-border raids into Cameroon in recent weeks.

It follows the deployment of more than 1,000 soldiers to Cameroon's long and porous border with Nigeria last month, in a bid to prevent such attacks.

"A group of people we think are linked with Boko Haram made an incursion this afternoon in Zigague. They blocked the road and opened fire," a police officer told AFP news agency.

The villagers were killed when the militants were confronted by Cameroonian soldiers, according to local media.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Boko Haram loosely translates as "Western education is forbidden"

State radio said suspected Boko Haram militants - who are fighting for an Islamic state in northern Nigeria - were behind the attack.

Militants were also seen storming the house of a local chief and abducting his child, the radio reported, quoting an army commander.

Cameroonian President Paul Biya sacked two senior army officers at the forefront of the battle against Islamist militants last week.

The decision came just days after the deputy prime minister's wife was abducted by militants from the northern town of Kologata, along with her maid, a religious leader and the local mayor.

Militants have also kidnapped foreign nationals in northern Cameroon before, including a French family and Chinese workers.

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