THE PROTECTION OF THE RIGHTS OF MILITARY PERSONNEL; CASE STUDY: THE ANGLOPHONE CRISIS OF CAMEROON
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Armed conflict arises whenever there is fighting with arms between states or armed violence between governmental authorities and organized armed groups. It can be either internationalized or internal. As per the 1949 Geneva Conventions, armed conflict involves people fighting against colonial domination or racist regimes in the exercise of their right to self-determination. Internal armed conflict is fighting between state armed forces and the separatist fighters as in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon. Despite the laws regulating armed conflict, there still exist a violation of the rights of military personnel as well as the challenges they face in exercising their rights, causing negative effects. However, this research turns to examine the extent to which the protection of the rights of military personnel is effective in the Northwest and Southwest regions as well as to examine the extent to which the rights of military personnel have been protected in Cameroon during the Anglophone armed conflict. The qualitative research methodology was used in this work in which the doctrinal approach was applied due to its non-statistical nature. This work is significant due to the fact that there is need to determine the efficiency and adequacy of the existing legal framework with a view on how military personnel are protected in armed conflict as regards to the Anglophone crisis in Cameroon thus by examining the roles of military personnel and their respective rights. It will also help the country or society better understand the meaning of internal armed conflict.
There were basically three theories used in this work namely; the Natura law theory in which its proponents Thomas Aquinas, John Locke, and Hobbes in which they explained the behaviour of individuals in the society from certain basic assumptions of human nature; the Martial Race theory whose proponent was Heike Libeau and his views were based on constant manipulation and adoption o changing political requirements, and utilizing racial, social, religious criteria; the Triple Pronged theory, developed by Henry Shue which is to the effect that states must protect, respect and fulfil the fundamental human rights of its citizens. This research further discovered that military personnel go through many difficulties of which are an important one is separation from their loved ones. The research will as well recommend certain ways in which these difficulties can be overwhelmed of which one is to strengthen the social welfare services of military barracks in order to be able to monitor and maintain the activities of the family when duty calls.