UNHRC: Minister Ouahbi Highlights Development of Southern Provinces, in Contrast with Suffering in Tindouf Camps

Justice Minister Abdellatif Ouahbi, who chairs the Moroccan delegation to the 52nd session of the Human Rights Council (HRC), stressed, Monday in Geneva, the overall development of the Kingdom’s southern provinces, in contrast with the suffering of the population held against its will in the Tindouf camps in Algeria. The southern provinces of the Kingdom are experiencing a comprehensive economic and social development allowing the population to enjoy their rights and participate in the management of public affairs through institutions, noted Ouahbi in a speech at the United Nations Palace in Geneva, inaugurating the status of Morocco as a member of the UNHRC for the period 2023-2025. In contrast, the suffering of Moroccans held against their will in extremely difficult conditions in the Tindouf camps in Algeria has continued for nearly half a century, he noted, noting that the daily life of these people is marked by confinement, confiscation of the right of assembly and prohibition of movement. They also suffer extrajudicial killings, arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances, the practice of all forms of torture, rape, human trafficking and child recruitment, by militias that condition the enjoyment of the most basic rights to subjugation, political affiliation and ideological conformity, Ouahbi added. Regarding the artificial conflict over the Moroccan Sahara, the Kingdom reiterated its support for the political process and its commitment to the roundtable format with the participation of all parties, under the exclusive auspices of the United Nations, in order to reach a “realistic, achievable, sustainable and compromise-based” solution, within the framework of national sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Kingdom, based on the autonomy initiative that the Security Council has qualified as serious and credible for the 19th time.