Activists have long accused Algeria of violating the rights of Sahrawis for the past 46 years.
Rabat – The United Nations’ Human Rights Council has established Algeria’s responsibility in the human rights violations committed against distressed Sahrawis in the Tindouf camps.
The UN council met in Geneva on March 1 to discuss the longstanding predicament of the Sahrawis refugees in Tindouf.
Speaking during the meeting under item 2 of the agenda of the 46th session of the Human Rights Council, Sahrawi human rights defender Adnan Braih said “thousands of Sahrawis” have been “condemned to silence in the camps of Tindouf in the southwest of Algeria, where the Polisario and its armed militias are sowing terror.”
Braih added,“I am confident of your commitment to be the voice of the voiceless, and I have come to defend the cause of thousands of Sahrawis condemned to silence in the Tindouf camps in southwestern Algeria, where the Polisario and armed militias sow terror and control with fire and blood, taking advantage of complicity.”
He mentioned the case of his brother, Ahmed Khalil Braih, who was kidnapped by Algerian intelligence services in January 2009.
“Indeed, the Algerian state still refuses to reveal the fate of my brother, Ahmed Khalil Braih, kidnapped by its intelligence services in January 2009 in Algiers when he was a human rights adviser to the secretary of the Polisario,” he added.
Algerian authorities were also questioned over the suppression, torture, and kidnapping of supporters of the opposition in the camps.
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Sahrawi activist and former Polisario member, Mustafa Salma, has accused Algiers of violating human rights of Sahrawis in Tindouf.
“Sahrawis’ legal status has been suspended for decades and they are unable to obtain identification documents proving their legal status on Algerian soil. They are not refugees or are foreign immigrants with a residence card, nor are they citizens with [Algerian] nationality,” the activist lamented in one of his many denunciations of Algeria’s responsibility in the continued plight of Tindouf refugees..
Despite consistent warnings from the UN secretary general and several NGOs, the rights violations continue and the situation of the Sahrawi refugees in Tindouf camps is far from improving.