Report establishes iniquity of trial of Saharawi political prisoners of Gdeim Izik group in Rabat

Paris, June 19, 2017 (SPS) - A report of the defense's observations on the trial of the Saharawi political prisoners of the Gdeim Izik group before the Court of Appeal of Rabat establishes the unfairness of the trial and the lack of scientific and legal credibility of the charges against the accused.

The appeal trial, resumed early June, was postponed Thursday to July 11. This is the fifth postponement of the trial of the 24 Sahrawi activists who were arrested, tortured and sentenced to heavy sentences on the basis of confessions signed under torture because of their participation in the Sahrawi protest camp in Gdeim Izik in 2010.

The 74-page report, drafted by Me Ingrid Metton and Me Olfa Ouled, highlights that "all the elements presented to prove the guilt of the accused is sorely lacking scientific and legal credibility".

According to the indictment, Sahrawi political prisoners are prosecuted for "acts of violence committed on public officials, killing with intent, association of criminals for the purpose of committing crime and corpse desecration ".

The report underlines that "the minutes, obtained under torture, central evidence of the military trial and the proceedings before the court of appeal, are inoperative", recalling that the military court had relinquished the case for lack of evidence.

Unlike the public campaign that has been waged in the media, "the judgment of the military court has (...) not been broken as a result of legislative change excluding the jurisdiction of the military court, but due to the lack of reasons for the decision that stemmed from the lack of evidence against the accused, explains the document to be sent to French President Emmanuel Macron, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, embassies, international institutions and NGOs. (SPS)