Political prisoner Mohamed Bani ends hunger strike

Political prisoner Mohamed Bani, who was on hunger strike for 14 days that started on the 9th of March, ended his protest today after a meeting with the Regional Director of  Prison and Reintegration who promised him a transfer to Bouzakarn prison and authorization for his family to visit 4 days a week and two weekly phone calls.

In a telephone call this morning with his wife, Bani said that he is very sick.

Mohamed Bani Sahrawi political prisoner of the Gdeim Izik Group has been tortured and is serving a life sentence.

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Relatives of Gdeim Izik’s political prisoners appeal to SG of the UN

The relatives of the political prisoners of Gdeim Izik appealed today to António Guterres, SG of the United Nations to intervene in favor of these Saharawi activists, whose elementary rights are violated daily.

Continuing tortures, random transfers from jail, isolation, medical malpractice are just some of the aspects focused on this appeal.

The families also alert to the prisoners who are currently on hunger strike and have been put in isolation as a punitive measure, a clear violation of the most elementary rights.

The families denounce the lack of dialogue on the part of the Moroccan authorities despite the numerous complaints presented by detainees and relatives.

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Sahrawi political prisoner Naama Asfari transferred to the prison of Kenitra

According to information from his wife, Mrs. Claude Mangin, Naama Asfari, Sahrawi political prisoner of the group of Gdeim Izik was transferred on March 15, 2018 to Kenitra prison.

Naama Asfari was in isolation for 30 days in the prison of El Arjat where he was the only member of the group of Gdeim Izik.
Asfari had announced a hunger strike beginning on February 27, but was put in solitary confinement on February 12 last.
The wife did not know if her husband was alive or dead and was only been able to speak to Asfari for a few minutes on the 15th after his transfer and learned that he had suspended the strike.

Naama Asfari informed his wife that on February 26th the penitentiary administration handed him transfer papers to sign. The human rights activist and political prisoner had demanded to be transferred to a prison in Western Sahara, after the signing of the transfer he decided to suspend the hunger strike, but the day he left the isolation he was transferred to the prison of Kentira located 1.200 km away from Sahara West.

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Morocco puts Gdeim Izik prisoners in life danger

On the 9th of March, 8 Saharawi political prisoners of the Gdeim Izik group in Ait Melloul and Kenitra prisons entered a hunger strike demanding the respect of their basic rights.

On the 8th of March the prison directors of both penitentiaries informed the prisoners that they had a “note de service” an official memo saying that if they would begin a hunger strike they would be put in isolation.

In Ait Melloul prison Sidahmed Lemjeyid and Mbarek Lefkir suspended their hunger strike on the 12th of March after the threats issued by the prison director.

According to information of the families, Mohamed Bani and Brahim Ismaili were put in isolation on the 12th of March without drinkable water, the isolation cells are known as “coffins” and have no windows, the prisoners have to sleep on the floor.

The daughter of Mr. Ismaili denounced that the Regional Director of the Prisons of Agadir and the Prison Director of Ait Melloul 2 told Mr. Ismaili that if he would fall into a coma they would give him an injection to get rid of him definitively and put an end to the troubles.

At 8am of the 9th of March, Sidi Abdallahi Abbahah, El Bachir Boutanguiza, Mohamed Bourial and Abdallahi Lakfawni were brought to isolation cells in Kenitra since they started the hunger strike.

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Saharawi political prisoners on hunger strike placed in isolation

Sidi Abdallahi Abbahah, El Bachir Boutanguiza, Abdallahi Lakfawni and Mohamed Bourial, Sahrawi political prisoners from the Gdeim Izik group who started a hunger strike today (see news here) were placed in isolation today at 8am.

The director of the Kenitra prison had threatened yesterday the Saharawi activists that all those who went on hunger strike would be placed in isolation as a disciplinary measure.

We recall that in November 2017, in reaction to a letter sent by a group of lawyers to the French Prime Minister on the situation of Saharawi political prisoners, the General Delegation of the Administration of Pentineciaries and Reintegration of the Kingdom of Morocco published a statement in which it said that due to the obstinacy of some prisoners in making warning hunger strikes they had to apply appropriate regulation against them.

The Kingdom of Morocco thus does not respect the hunger strike as a universally recognized non-violent protest form, but sees it as a disciplinary offense.

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8 prisoners of Gdeim izik go on hunger strike

Today, 9th of March 2018, the Sahrawi political prisoners of the Gdeim Izik Group, Brahim Ismaili, Mohamed Mbarek Lefkir, Sidahmed Lemjeyid and Mohamed Bani detained in Ait Melloul and El Bachir Boutanguiza, Mohamed Bourial, Abdallahi Lakfawni and Sidi Abdallahi Abbahah detained in Kenitra go on hunger strike.

These Sahrawi activists detained in 2010 during and after the dismantling of Gdeim Izik have been victims of torture, ill-treatment, arbitrary detention, an illegal military trial, a second civil court trial without guarantees of a fair trial and based only on minutes written by the police signed under torture.

On 16 September 2017, the group of 19 detainees was dispersed through several prisons in the Kingdom of Morocco, during and after the transfer they were again victims of ill-treatment.

On 4 December 2017, Sidi Abdallahi Abbahah and Ahmed Sbaai were placed in isolation in two small toilets with the lights on 24h/24h, beaten and maltreated for ten days.

After numerous complaints presented by the prisoners and their families that had no response by the Moroccan authorities and a very weak state of health due to ill-treatment and medical neglect the 4 members of the group detained in Ait Melloul prison and 4 detained in Kenitra prison decided to go on hunger strike demanding their most basic rights as is the right of visit, adequate medical care, and others.

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Ahmed Sbaai Saharawi political prisoner transferred to unknown location

At 04:00 today, the Sahrawi political prisoner of the group of Gdeim Izik, Mr. Ahmed Sbaai, was taken by the guards of the Kenitra prison to an unknown location.

Neither Mr. Sbaai’s attorneys nor his relatives were informed of his whereabouts.

Ahmed Sbaai suffers from heart problems and asthma. From 4 to 13 December 2017 Mr. Sbaai was put in a space that served as WC, a 1x2m for ten days with the lights on 24 hours/24hours, mistreated and without medical care despite repeated asthma attacks.

Mr. Abdallahi Abbahah, another prisoner of this group, was in the same conditions in an identical space.

The transfer of political prisoners from the Gdeim Izik group has been a constant in order to divide the group and break the spirit of these human rights activists.

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Naama Asfari in isolation announces unlimited hunger strike

Press release

“Better to die for dignity than to live without it”

– After a week of solitary confinement and a warning strike on February 12 and 13, 2018, strike for which the prison administration refused to give me a receipt of strike as declaration,

– After the irresponsible reaction of the director of the penitentiary institution transferring me to a cell of isolation and depriving me of all fundamental rights, with false and absurd arguments that show the pressure and blackmail exerted against me from the first day by the director of this prison ,

– And because of the persistence of this blackmail and the lack of response from the Central Administration on my first request to be transferred to one of the cities of Western Sahara and to open a serious dialogue about my legitimate claims:

I announce that I will start an unlimited hunger strike starting on February 27, 2018.

The strike will take place after having tried, by all means, to alleviate the suffering of my brothers from the group of Gdeim Izik that were separated and dispersed for more than 6 months, now in several prisons, after the unjust sentences that were imposed us due simply because we are activists of freedom and self-determination of the Saharawi people.

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Gdeim Izik – Mohamed Ayoubi has passed away

Mohamed Ayoubi, political prisoner of Gdeim Izik on parole, died today in El Aaiun, the first mortal victim of this group of Saharawi national heroes, unjustly condemned by the occupying regime to 20 years toile in prison. Morocco is responsible for this death one more in a long history of assassinations, torture, forced disappearances, bombing, the slow genocide of the Saharawi people will only end on the day that Morocco leaves the occupied territories and the international community assumes its responsibility.

Ayoubi who was detained by the Moroccan occupation authorities during the dismantling of Gdeim Izik on 8 November 2010, a victim of rape and physical and psychological torture for several days at both the headquarters of the Gendarmerie and the police station in El Aaiun, Western Sahara, was transferred with several detainees from the Gdeim Izik group on 11 November 2010 to Salé Rabat in the Kingdom of Morocco.

Due to the torture he suffered, he had to stay in a wheelchair during his time of detention in Salé 2 until 12 January 2011 when he was transferred to the Souissi Rabat hospital where he was hospitalized until 28 February 2011.

On returning to prison he could walk but due to torture and his condition of diabetic and kidney problems continued with serious health problems and without the necessary medical care.

On 31 October 2011, all prisoners of Gdeim Izik started a hunger strike that lasted more than a month. On 2 December 2011 the Moroccan Human Rights Council negotiated with the strikers the release of Mohamed Ayoubi who was one of the main demands due to his extremely serious health condition.

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