Six prisoners of Gdeim Izik Group on hunger strike

Mohamed Tahlil Sahrawi political prisoner from the group of Gdeim Izik, entered this night on hunger strike.

Tahlil is detained in Ait Melloul prison and protests against the subhuman conditions to which he is subjected, obliged to sleep on the floor without any blanket and subject to constant threats and insults from common criminals.

He joins his comrade Sidahmed Lemjeyid, who is detained in the same prison and started a hunger strike yesterday, 20 September.

Brahim Ismaili, El Bachir Khadda, Hassan Dah and Cheik Banga detained in Tiflet 1 have also been on hunger strike since day 19.

Kenitra’s group who was on a hunger strike for 48 hours on 19 and 20 September had a meeting today with the Kenitra prosecutor who wanted to know what the reasons for the strike were.

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Press Release of the Families of Gdeim Izik

Following the abductions of the Sahrawi political prisoners of the Gdeim Izik group, carried out by the prison administration, the latter were dispersed in different prisons within Morocco without their families being informed.

After communicating with some of these detainees, the magnitude of the suffering is clear. The situation of our children is tragic due to mistreatment and the political desire for revenge, contrary to all international rules and conventions that guarantee their dignity and their rights. The situation of Saharawi political prisoners can be summarized as follows:

  • Abuse with insults and defamation during and after the transfer, in particular the detainees Abdallahi Toubali, Brahim Ismaili in Tiflet 1 and Tiflet 2, and Sidahmed Lemjeyid and Mohamed Bani in Ait Melloul prison.
  • All prisoners are held in isolated cells that do not meet the minimum hygiene requirements. Some are full of worms and rats and the proximity of prisoners of common crime leads to polluting emissions (cannabis and tobacco). All their belongings that they brought from the previous prison were confiscated, like blankets, clothes, books and medicines.
  • They do not have access to the medical treatment required by their state of health, in particular Sidahmed Lemjeyid and Brahim Ismaili.
  • The right of free access to detainees is not guaranteed; the right to visit the mother of political prisoner Mohamed Mbarek Lefkir in Ait Melloul prison has been denied.

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Situation of the political prisoners of Gdeim Izik deteriorates

According to information obtained from the direct relatives of the detainees of Gdeim Izik, the Moroccan authorities did not allow detainees in Tiflet to take anything from the previous prison except for the clothing.

Brahim Ismaili went on an open hunger strike because of the ill-treatment he suffered, and the conditions of the cell where he lies on the cement floor. All his medications have been withdrawn by the guards.

The activists arrested in Tiflet are in cells in modules with prisoners of common crime.

Abdallahi Toubali will go on hunger strike on Thursday 21 September.

The detainees of the Gdeim Izik Group in Kenitra prison are in individual cells, also in modules with common criminals. This group will be on symbolic hunger strike for 48 hours on 19 and 20 September.

The family of Abdel Jalil Laaroussi remains without news about his state of health and without contact.

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Gdeim Group prisoners located

The eleven political prisoners of the group of Gdeim Izik who were in unknown whereabouts since the dawn of September 16, were located:

Prison of Tifelt 1
Bachir Khada, Hassan Dah, Brahim Ismaili and Cheik Banga

Tifelt 2
Mohamed Lamin Haddi, Khouna Babeit and Toubali Abdelahi

Bouzakarn Prison
Mohamed Tahlil

Ait Melloul Prison
Mohamed Embarek Lefkir, Mohamed Bani and Sidahmed Lemjeyid

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Gdeim Izik prisoners transferred from prison – 11 missing

At dawn on Saturday, 16 September, 18 of the 19 prisoners of the Gdeim Izik Group were arbitrarily transferred from prison without any prior notice. According to information from the families Naama Asfari was the only prisoner that remained in El Arjat prison, Abdel Jalil Laaroussi was taken to the Okacha prison in Casablanca and a group of six prisoners: Sidi Abdallahi Abbahah, Houcein Zawi, Abdallahi Lakfawni, Ahmed Sbaai and Mohamed Bourial were taken to Kenitra prison.

Eleven prisoners have been missing for more than 24 hours, neither families nor lawyers are informed of where they are.

This transfer takes place only a few weeks before the visit of the sub commission against torture of the United Nations to Morocco.

The Moroccan authorities try to make the contact between the UN sub commission and the Gdeim Izik group difficult and also weaken the group’s ability to defend their rights.

We recall that Morocco “hid” the prisoner Abdel Jalil Laaroussi, between criminal prisoners in 2014 when the working group on arbitrary detentions of the UN visited the prison in Salé, Rabat. Abdel Jalil Laaroussi had been violently tortured for months and with this maneuver Morocco prevented contact between the activist and the UN working group.

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