Morocco calls for more concern on fate of Moroccans sequestered in Tindouf
Morocco, Politics, 3/24/2000
Morocco has called for more concern on the part of the international community for the fate of Moroccans forcibly detained in the Tindouf camps (in southwestern Algeria).
The call was launched by Moroccan minister of human rights, Mohamed Aujjar, before the 56th session of the UN Human rights commission currently convening in Geneva.
Aujjar also called the international community to conduct investigations on what is taking place in the camps and said the Moroccan government is deeply worried over the human rights violations against the Moroccans who are forcibly detained --by the Polisario, an Algerian-backed movement claiming the independence of the Sahara.
The United Nations is trying to hold a referendum in the Sahara --a southern Moroccan territory, formerly under Spanish rule, retrieved by Morocco in 1975 under the Madrid accords.
These Moroccans are subject to torture, and their most basic rights are violated on a daily basis, he said.
The Moroccan government makes an urgent appeal to the international community for more attention to this issue, for investigations on the situation in the camps and to approach those escaped from the camps to find out what is happening there.
Aujjar confirmed the referendum in the Sahara cannot be held unless all the populations native of these provinces are allowed to participate in the vote and that Morocco, which is convinced as to the fairness of its territorial integrity cause, remains attached to the UN settlement plan and determined to cooperate in a constructive and sincere way with the UN.
The referendum, which will give the people of the Sahara a choice between independence or integration with Morocco, has been repeatedly delayed because of disputes over the voters list.
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