UNHRC called to hold Algeria accountable for repression in Tindouf

A human rights activist in the Tindouf camps denounced, Friday before the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva, the repression and serious abuses perpetrated by the leadership of the separatist polisario front against the population of these camps, calling for holding Algeria accountable for these violations.

The Human rights militant and opponent to the polisario, Fadel Breika, made his testimony before the 43rd session of the UNHRC in Geneva. He underlined the legal responsibility of Algeria in the atrocities committed by the separatist leaders and the Algerian security services against the Sahrawis of the Tindouf camps. He also condemned “the silence of the so-called defenders of the Sahrawi people on the ill-treatment and violations they are subjected to by the polisario leaders, with the complicity of the Algerian security services, to silence any dissenting voice in the camps.”


Breika has just been freed from prison after a five month-detention, during which he suffered, along with two Sahrawi bloggers, Mahmoud Zedan and Moulay Abba Bouzid, physical and psychological ill-treatment. Their only sin was to dare to denounce the serious violations of human rights and the depravity of the separatist leaders as well as their exploitation of the misery of the populations of the Tindouf camps to serve their personal interests.


“My body still bears the scars of torture inflicted on me during the last five months of 2019 in one of the secret prisons run by the polisario, with the blessing of the Algerian government,” Breika told the members of the Human Rights Council.


He insisted on the harsh repression against freedom of opinion and expression in these camps, stressing that all the voices opposing the leadership of the polisario are systematically silenced.


He explained that he and two of his colleagues, journalist Mahmoud Zedan and blogger Moulay Aba Bouzid, were kidnapped by gunmen for the simple reason that they condemned, on social media, the serious violations committed by the leaders of the polisario.


The three Sahrawi activists will subsequently be held in secret places, where they had been subjected to various types of torture and abuse.


“My abduction was also an act of revenge on the part of the Algerian intelligence services, which participated in my interrogations and tortures,” he said. He explained that he had dared to organize a demonstration in front of the Algerian embassy in Madrid to demand the disclosure of the fate of his cousin and one of the polisario leaders, Khalil Ahmed Ibri, missing since his kidnapping in 2009 by the Algerian intelligence services in the Algerian capital.


Fadel Breika who denounced the silence of “the so-called defenders of the rights of the Sahrawi people” about the repeated violations in the Tindouf camps, called on the Human Rights Council and the international community to pressure Algeria to assume its legal responsibility as a country sheltering the Sahrawi population in Tindouf.

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