Tifariti (liberated territories), Dec 17, 2011 (SPS) - The Member of the National Secretariat of the Polisario Front and Minister of Defense, Mr. Mohamed Lamin Bouhali, confirmed “Moroccan intelligence is behind the kidnapping of the 3 three European cooperators in the Saharawi refugee camps on October 23, in the aim to disrupt the POLISARIO 13th Congress.”
“Moroccan intelligence was shocked, when we arrested a group of the kidnappings. It got afraid from revealing facts about it, so the Moroccan Press Agency immediately quoted that the kidnappings are a group of dissidents of the Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb,” said Mr. Bouhali, in a press conference on the sidelines of the Polisario 13th Congress taking place in the liberated town of Tifariti.
He revealed in this regard that Morocco “has contacted Burkina Faso, where the latter demonstrated readiness for the mediation to liberated the hostages,” confirming rejection of the Saharawi government to accept any mediation, recalling that chieftains in Mali have proposed their mediation to free the hostages, but the Frente Polisario refused because the main goal of the kidnappers is to get money.”
“The hostages are now being held north of Mali near the borders with Niger, and their kidnappers are looking for who would buy them after the failure of a deal to sell them to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb,” he added.
Minister of Defense revealed that the criminal group who has been arrested for being related to the kidnapping “consists of 11 elements, one of them is Saharawi national arrested Yesterday in Migec, Saharawi liberated territories.”
He said the mastermind of the operation called "Double Tate (double head)", Malian, has been arrested since about 10 days in a successful operation carried out by Saharawi Special Forces.
“Barons of drugs were divided up into two groups: the first composed of 7 elements and based in northern Mali, but the other group includes 5 elements were constantly moving in the Desert, especially in northern Mali and south of Algeria,” underlined the Saharawi official, adding that the first group was captured in an area 90km south of Dajla camp, while the the kidnapping operation’s mastermind been captured, he was shot on the wheels of his car, however, he replied by shooting on the pursuing force, leaving lethal injury.”
He pointed out that the baron, who wiped out, put on the night of Oct 22, 2011 at the Protocol (Shaheed Al Hafed) two cars equipped by soldiers and weapons to provide the protection for the criminals who abducted two Spaniards and Italian national.
“The kidnappers were six young people from Malian nationality, most of them belong to the Lamhar’s tribe and have links with drugs barons who provided them with information, weapons and various logistical means to carry out the operation, in addition to two armed cars to protect them when they being chased,” said Bouhali. (SPS)