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Volume 679: debated on Tuesday 8 September 2020

The Government are deeply concerned at the situation in the north-west and south-west regions of Cameroon. We are assisting humanitarian efforts, and today I can announce that we are increasing funding for those humanitarian efforts by £4.5 million, bringing the total for this year to £13.5 million.

I am grateful to the Minister for his answer and for his clear commitment, as I am to the Chair of the Select Committee for his interest in this area. What is going on in Cameroon is concerning for us all, whether we are talking about the multiple hundreds of thousands of displaced persons internally or in neighbouring countries, the more than 1 million people going hungry or the significant and continuing violence, including last month’s suicide bombing. This country has a special connection to Cameroon and a special responsibility to be part of a peaceful future there, as does France. It is hard to see a future settlement that does not involve both countries, so will the Minister tell us what conversations he has had with his counterpart in France about working together to bring about a peaceful solution?

That is an excellent point. I thank the hon. Gentleman for his passion on Cameroon, and I know that a number of colleagues share concerns, which the Government of Cameroon understand. We regularly engage with a number of partners, including the French and Americans, and the UN, where there have been resolutions. I intend to travel to Paris, covid permitting, in the next few months to discuss areas of mutual interest across the continent where we can work together, and Cameroon will be high on that list.