New attack by the Moroccan authorities on Saharawi journalists

Feb 16th, 2015 | By | Category: rights, Civil and political rights

El Aaiún, 29 January 2014

On Wednesday, 28 January 2014, the journalist of SADR TV Hayat El Khaldi invited the Saharawi journalists Mohamed Mayara and Zayou Abdelrahmane, a former political prisoner of the “Akdeim Izik” group, for the recording of a Saharawi television programme on the peaceful Intifada and the prospects of the resistance for 2015. Two other journalists, technicians, also came to the programme.  .

During the programme, the Moroccan General Intelligence Services surrounded the house of Fatimatou Dahouar where the recording took place.

Fatimatou Dahouar is a Saharawi activist for independence and a former disappeared person in the Moroccan secret detention centres. She had invited the journalists and lent her house for the programme.

More than twenty Moroccan police cars were there.

At 6 p.m., when Mohamed Mayara was leaving the house, police officers and General Intelligence agents surrounded his car and insulted him, spitting on his car.

The Moroccan governor (pasha) of occupied El Aaiún, Brahim Ben Brahim, has also insulted the journalist and threatened “to kidnap him with his family, his wife and child, and to hold him in a secret detention centre as his father had been held and together with his family”. M. Mayara’s father died in the Moroccan secret prison of Agdez in July 1977 as a result of the ill treatment and torture he suffered, when he disappeared as of 27 February 1976 with his three brothers. After being insulted and spat on, M. Mayara was instructed to leave the place immediately.

The producer/director of the programme and Chief of Technical Services of Équipe Média, Mamine Hachimi, was attacked by police officers and General Intelligence agents when he left the house a few minutes later. He was injured and his cell phone was stolen by the police officers. He lodged a complaint on these facts with the Public Prosecutor after receiving treatment. It was the same governor (pasha) who led this attack.

The other journalists, Mohamed Saleh Zerouali and Leili Hamoud left the house at midnight, when the police officers were all gone. It is not the first time that these journalists are attacked by the Moroccan police due to their media activities.

Leili Hamoud spent 8 months in prison in 2010-2011; Mohamed Saleh Zerouali has been arrested, interrogated and tortured four times since 2011; Mamine Hachimi was arrested at Tan Tan in November 2011 and he was interrogated and tortured for one week, without his family knowing his whereabouts.

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