Brazil – Association of Solidarity and for the Self-determination of the Saharawi People, protests against violations of the human rights of Saharawis

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PUSL.- Since the beginning of the occupation of the territory of Western Sahara by the Kingdom of Morocco in 1975, Saharawis have been victims of humiliation, physical aggression, unjustified arrests, torture and unjust condemnations by Moroccan courts. These facts occur daily and are only made public thanks to the dissemination of images captured by Saharawi citizens who resist the occupation, since Morocco prevents the free exercise of journalism in the territories it invaded.

A Saharawi who has documented police violence in Western Sahara, Walid Elbatal, and Mohamed El Ghazal were violently beaten and arrested in the city of Smara when they arrived at the house of Salah Lebsir who was released after four years in prison. Disproving the versions of the Moroccan authorities, a video clearly shows that the two Saharawis were approached and violently beaten by plainclothes policemen, being the vehicle in which they were surrounded by occupying police vehicles.

Against Elbatal, accusations of obstruction of traffic, threats to public officials and possession of a weapon were forged, despite the evidence shown by the video. He was sentenced to six years in prison, a sentence later reduced to two years. Ghazal is at large.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights is investigating the facts. The Association of Solidarity and Self-Determination of the Saharawi People, based in Brasilia, protests against this and other violations of the human rights of Saharawis who live in the territories illegitimately occupied by Morocco.