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Cameroon separatists block traffic, burn buses

AKUM, Cameroon — Armed Anglophone separatists burned buses and blocked traffic in the capital of the English-speaking northwest region, Cameroon’s military said Sunday as it deployed troops.

Separatists said the action in Bamenda was meant to disrupt next month’s presidential election; they say voting can’t take place in what they call the independent state of Ambazonia. The months of deadly unrest in Cameroon pose a serious challenge to 85-year-old President Paul Biya, who has been in power since 1982 and is running again. The government has sought to assure voters they will be protected.

The unrest began in 2016 when English speakers began calling for greater autonomy in the French-speaking country. The United Nations says 300 people have died.