Sahara Press Service (El Aaiun)

8 November 2012

Morocco: Thirty MEPs Call on Ashton to Condemn the Expulsion of International Observers

Brussels — Thirty European parliamentarians Thursday have called on The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton to strongly condemn the expulsion of 18 Spanish and 4 Norwegian international observers from occupied city of Al Aiun by the Moroccan authorities of occupation.

"On 7th November the Moroccan forces have expelled by force 18 Spanish and 4 Norwegian international observers from occupied Laayoune...these international observers were trying to assess the deteriorating situation of human rights", said MEPs in written question under the subject "Violence in Laayoune (Occupied Western Sahara). Repression of Sahrawi demonstrators and expulsion of Spanish and Norwegian observers"

European MP's led by Willy Meyer (Spanish United Left Party) recalled that "In 2010, thousands of Saharawis decided to respond to the Moroccan occupation force by setting up the Gdeim Izik camp on the outskirts of Laayoune to call for an improvement in their living conditions and a legitimate referendum on self-determination. ".

"In 8th November the Moroccan Army decided to counter-attack, dismantling the camp and wreaking violence. Two years after these events, 22 Sahrawi political prisoners are still in Sale Prison and their trial under military court has been postponed several times". They added.

MEPs drew attention of Ashton to recent escalation of repression committed by the Moroccan authorities of against the Saharawi defenseless civilians in occupied Western Sahara.

MEPs, from five different parliamentary groups (GUE / NGL, Greens / ALDE, S & D, ALDE and the EPP), from Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Germany, Slovenia, France, Ireland or UK have asked the High Representative for Foreign Affairs to investigate the violation by Morocco to the provisions of article two of the Association Agreement EU-Morocco.

MEP's are "Willy Meyer, Jao Ferreira, Inês Zuber, Pino Arlacchi, Bart Staes, Helmut Scholz, Mikael Gustafsson, Patrick Le-Hyaric, Marisa Matias, Alda Sousa, Nicolaos Chountis, Sabine Lösing, Paul Murphy, Ivo Vajgl, Ana Miranda, Raül Romeva, Jill Evans, Norbert Neuser, Nicole Kiil-Nielsen, Andrés Perello, Antonio Masip, Rui Tavares, Åsa Westlund, Michéle Rivesi, Ana Gomes, Marco Scurria, Jean Lambert ".

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