Just before dawn on Monday, November 5, unknown gunmen abducted around 79 school children from dormitories at Presbyterian Secondary School Nkwen in Bamenda, a town in Cameroon's Anglophone North-West region.
The group was abducted in Bamenda, a commercial hub of Cameroon's restive English-speaking region, on Monday.
The video is believed to have been taken by the Amba boys, a group whose name is in reference to the state of Ambazonia that armed separatists are attempting to enact in the northwest and southwest regions of Cameroon.
An Anglophone separatist movement took up arms previous year to demand independence for the North-West and South-West regions - the two English-speaking regions in a country where French is the most widely spoken official language.
A video said to have been released by the kidnappers shows several young boy being forced to state their name to camera.
The men who identify themselves on the video as the kidnappers say they will only release the children when they achieve what they want.
The pupils appear to have been pawns in a conflict that has been raging in the English-speaking regions of the majority francophone central African country, although it is not clear exactly who took them and why. The children say they were kidnapped by the Amba boys, and they do not know where they are being held.
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The crisis started as an industrial strike by lawyers and teachers in 2016, but snowballed into an internal armed conflict since past year when separatists joined and symbolically declared the independence of the Federal Republic of Ambazonia. "That 79 of our children and three of their staff can be picked up by terrorists", Tchoffo said.
"We shall only release you after the struggle".
There have been other kidnappings from schools in the region, but this is the largest number kidnapped at once.
Separatists have imposed curfews and closed down schools as part of their protest.
Several separatist groups, who denied involvement in the kidnapping, alleged government forces took the students. Between February 2017 and May 2018, for example, at least 42 schools in the regions were attacked, including 36 that were damaged by arson attacks, 11 damaged by other types of attacks, as well as two school buses burnt down and various harassments and attacks on students and teachers.
Last week separatist militants attacked workers on a state-run rubber plantation in southwestern Cameroon, chopping off their fingers because the men had defied an order to stay away from the farms.