Thousands of Chadian troops have arrived in Cameroon to help the Central African nation fight the Nigerian militant group Boko Haram.
Cameroon state radio journalist Said Abdoul Karim, who is based in the town of Kousseri on the border with Chad, told VOA in a telephone interview that thousands of Chadian soldiers came into Cameroon in a convoy of military trucks Saturday morning.
He says the soldiers passed through the Chadian town of Bongor and got into Cameroon through the northern town of Yagoua and are on their way to Maroua where they will work together with Cameroonian forces. He says there was a big event in Chad to demonstrate solidarity with Cameroon in fighting Boko Haram.
Colonel Didier Badjeck, spokesman for Cameroon's military, says the soldiers have crossed the boundary and are on their way to the town of Maroua in northern Cameroon, where they will be deployed to the war zone on the border with Nigeria. He says they will work with Cameroonian soldiers to crush Boko Haram incursions in Cameroon. He says that he has given this information to the minister of communication so that Cameroonians along the road the soldiers are using should not panic.
Chad said last Wednesday that it would support Cameroon, whose president, Paul Biya, had appealed for a coordinated international response to Boko Haram. Biya did not say when or how many troops would be deployed in his Thursday announcement.