12 European tourists among 18 hostages freed in Cameroon

Eighteen people, including twelve European tourists that were taken hostage in southwestern Cameroon, have been rescued in a military operation.

A government statement said the seven Swiss nationals and five Italians had been seized by “armed terrorists.”

It occurred in a restive English-speaking region of the country where protesters say they are marginalised by the country’s Francophone majority.

It is not clear when they were taken, but the government said they had been on an excursion to a tourist site.

In recent months separatists in Cameroon’s two mainly English-speaking areas – the North-West and South-West regions – have been demanding independence.