After the latest events in the Tindouf camps, the Canario-Saharawi Forum called for greater monitoring and observation from the international community regarding the protection of human rights in the Tindouf camps.
Through a press release, the Forum denounced the attacks perpetrated against family members and relatives of the Secretary General of the Sahrawi Movement for Peace (MSP), Hach Ahmed Bericalla, committed by members of the Polisario. There followed a wave of protests which reflects the height of the patience of the inhabitants of the camps.
Indeed, says the Forum, these new attacks against the latter are just one more act of repeated similar episodes that we have already denounced in previous communiqués, either against members of the MSP or against the Sahrawi population in general which is publicly at odds with its leaders“.
Thus, in this violent context of blind repression, it is emphasized, ” we are alarmed by the exponential increase in the vulnerability in which many Sahrawis find themselves in the Tindouf camps“.
The Forum notes in this respect that ” vsThis repression, which aggravates an already precarious situation, manifests itself in the fact that not only those who decide to publicly display their deviations from the official Polisario line are repressed, but moreover, and the height of indecency, their relatives are punished. Innocent women and the elderly, as happened recently, are paying the price”.
A more than alarming situation is also denounced where ” these Sahrawis are daily confronted with persecution, threats and criminalization, which expose them to aggression, attacks and other arbitrary arrests”.
“This is why, at the Sahrawi Forum of the Canary Islands, we strongly condemn these violations of rights and the reprisals deployed against those who defend an alternative and possible solution to this dispute which is leading the Sahrawis to nowhere and in which the leaders of the separatist movement embarked an exhausted population”, is it raised.
Note is also made of increased violence on the part of the Polisario after the international successes of the MSP and that of the conference held in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria last September as well as its wide media coverage. The Forum calls on the UN and human rights organizations to condemn the behavior of the Polisario, and by extension those of Algeria, in order to put an end to these infamous practices against the innocent civilian population and sequestered.
Faced with the fact that the separatist movement is repressing for the sole exercise of fundamental rights such as, among others, that of freedom of expression, the Forum extends this requirement to the EU and calls on its High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and security policy, Josep Borrel.
The Forum ultimately recalls that recently, it was the young people of the Polisario who denounced their leaders, in their official media, demanding a ” necessary generational renewal due to distrust of the Polisario leadership due to its irresponsibility and prejudicial conduct”.
Faced with this rebellious air, the Polisario recognized cases of internal repression and frequent violations of human rights. Ghali had even announced “reparations to victims of past mistakes and abuses”, in what appears to be an announcement made for the gallery with a clear intention to launder himself.
The sequestered continue to be exposed to violations of their human rights due to the legal vacuum in the camps. A situation from which the Polisario takes advantage to apply its own modality of justice, exercising discretionary and arbitrary powers over the population.
And the Forum to indicate: This is why we must denounce the government of the host country, Algeria (which, according to international law, is responsible for protecting the rights of all people on its territory), which has handed over the de facto administration of the camps to a movement that is not officially accountable for its conduct before the international human rights system“.
Algeria has indeed denied any responsibility for these serious human rights violations committed on its territory. The Forum notes in this regard that “ the international community must hold responsible not only the polisario, but also the Algerian government, for any violation of fundamental rights committed within its borders“.