President of Republic calls on UN Secretary General to intervene for "immediate" release of Saharawi political prisoners

Bir-Lehlu, 13 March 2017 (SPS) - The President of the Republic, Secretqry-General of the Polisario Front, Brahim Ghali, has called on the new UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, in order to intervene urgently for the immediate and unconditional release of Saharawi political prisoners, in particular the group of Gdeim Izik, who are due to appear before the Moroccan court in Rabat on Monday.

The international community and the United Nations in particular must assume its responsibility in Western Sahara through the protection of the human rights of the Sahrawis pending its decolonization through a referendum to allow the Saharawi people to exercise their right to inalienable right to self-determination and independence under the auspices of the United Nations, said the President of the Republic in a letter to Mr. Guterres.

"There can be no atmosphere to facilitate and provide favorable conditions for negotiations in the light of persistent Moroccan violations, which reflect blatant contempt for international humanitarian law, international law, international resolutions and threaten to undermine the efforts necessary to progress towards a just and lasting solution of the conflict."

"We reiterate our call for the urgent need to extend the powers of MINURSO to include monitoring and respect for the human rights situation, halting the looting of Western Sahara's wealth, dismantling the Moroccan wall of shame, which represents a crime against humanity, and the immediate implementation of the UN-OAU settlement plan (currently AU) for the organization of a referendum on the self-determination of the Saharawi people."

The Saharawi political prisoners of Gdeim Izik were unjustly sentenced in 2010 by a Moroccan military court to heavy sentences ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment. The trial on appeal of these Saharawi political prisoners scheduled for December 26 in Rabat was postponed for the first time to 27 January 2017 and then to March 13. (SPS)