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Morocco/Western Sahara
Urgent Interventions

'Morocco/ Western Sahara: alleged arbitrary arrests and forced disappearances

Case MAR 201000

The International Secretariat of the OMCT requests your URGENT intervention in the following situation in Morocco/Western Sahara.

Brief description of the situation

The International Secretariat of the OMCT has just been informed by a reliable source of the alleged arbitrary arrest of 8 young people and the disappearance of 4 more in Western Sahara (Morocco).

According to the information received, on 5 October 2000, at about 1:30 pm, eight youths were arrested – among which were two minors (See Case MAR 201000.CC) – near the city of Guelta Zemour (in the occupied territories) of Western Sahara. Another 4 young people have reportedly disappeared and their families fear that they have been shot by the Moroccan army.

On the morning of 5 October 2000, these young men reportedly went on a trip near the city of Guelta Zemour and were attacked by units of the Moroccan army, causing them to flee in all directions. The Moroccan soldiers succeeded in detaining six of the young men as well as two children. The others fled under gunfire.

Those reported disappeared:
1. El Anssari Said ould Mohamed, (born 1980 in El Aaiun)
2. Ayach Bachir ould Sidi Mohamed, (born 1980 in El Aaiun)
3. Bachri Mohamed ould Brahim, (born 1980 in El Aaiun)
4. Mohamed Lamin ould Mohamed Yaydih, (born 1980 in El Aaiun)

Those reported arrested:
1. Baiba hadda Mohamed, (born 1982 in El Aaiun)
2. El Karcha Hamadi Hasanna, (born 1980 in El Aaiun)
3. Laarosi Abd-el Yalil sidi-Mohamed, (born 1980 in El Aaiun)
4. Bouamud Mohamed El-Mahyub, (born 1981 in El Aaiun)
5. Zeghman Mohamed Brahim, (born 1982 in El Aaiun)
6. Daddah Nafaa Esied, (born 1982 in El Aaiun)

According to the information, the six youths and two children were taken to the commander military post of the Royal Armed Forces (FAR) in the city of Guelta where they were allegedly subjected to torture and ill-treatment. One of the young men, Zeghman Mohamed Brahim is reportedly in a serious physical condition as a result of the torture he was allegedly subjected to by a Captain in the Army.

On the morning of 6 October 2000, these young men and two children were transferred to the Royal Police Force who continued, together with Judicial Police Officers in the division of El Aaiún, to torture and interrogate them for two days. Finally, on 9 October 2000, they were all charged with “gang forming” and “intent of unlawful immigration” and sent to the prison known as the ‘black prison’.

The International Secretariat is gravely concerned for the physical and psychological integrity of these young men, both those detained and disappeared.

Action requested

Please write to the Moroccan authorities urging them to:

i. locate immediately the whereabouts of those reported disappeared and ensure their physical and psychological integrity;
ii. order the immediate release of those youths in detention in the absence of valid charges or, if such charges exist, bring them before an impartial and competent tribunal and guarantee their procedural rights at all times;
iii. order a thorough and impartial investigation into the alleged ill-treatment and torture, in order to identify those responsible, bring them to trial and apply the penal, civil and/or administrative sanctions as provided by law;
iv. guarantee the respect of human rights and the fundamental freedoms throughout the country in accordance with national laws and international human rights standards.


King Mohammed VI. Ibn Al Hassan, Roi du Maroc, Palais Royal, Rabat, Morocco, Fax: (+212 7) 73 07 72

M. Abderrahmane El Youssoufi, Premier Ministre, Bureau du Premier Ministre et Ministre des Affaires Etrangeres et de la Cooperation, Palais, Rabat, Morocco, Fax : (+212 7) 76 99 95 // 76 91 95 or 77 68 37

M. Ahmed Midaoui, Ministre de l’Interieur, Quartier Administratif, Rabat, Morocco, Fax : (+212 7) 76 20 56/76 64

M. Omar Azziman, Ministre de la Justice et des Droits de l’Homme, Palais de la Manounia, Rabat, Morocco, Fax : (+212 7) 73 89 40 / 73 27 10

M. Driss Dahak, President du Conseil Consultatif des Droits de l’Homme (CCDH), Place des Chouhada, B.P. 1341, Rabat Morocco, Fax : (+212 7) 72 68 56

Geneva, 20 October 2000

Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code of this appeal in your reply.
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