Want to know more about this particular case? Interested to learn more about the Gdeim Izik 25? Please check our background dossier on Gdeim Izik here.The civilian court of Salé (near Rabat) has largely upheld the severe sentences issued by a military tribunal against a group of 25 Saharawi activists.
The so-called Gdeim Izik group had been arrested and previously convicted in relation to the Moroccan army’s dismantling of the Gdeim Izik camp - a mass protest camp denouncing the Saharawi people's social and economic marginalization in their occupied homeland. On 8 November 2010, the Moroccan security forces destroyed the camp, resulting in violent clashes between the security forces and Saharawi protesters.
The 25 men have been arrested and tried on charges of inciting or participating in violence against security forces “leading to death with intent,” and participation in a criminal organization. All of them are however known for their activism for Saharawi rights or independence.
The Appeal Court in Salé issued its verdict at 04:45 on the 19th of July 2017 the following verdict against the Group Gdeim Izik:
Sentenced to life in prison: Ahmed Sbai Brahim Ismaïli Abdalahi Lakfawni Laaroussi Abdeljalil Mohamed El Bachir Boutinguiza Mohamed Bani Sidi Abdallah B'hah Sidahmed Lemjeyid
Sentenced to 30 years in prison: Eênama Asfari Mohamed Bourial Cheikh Banga
Sentenced to 25 years in prison: Hassan Dah El Houssin Ezzaoui Mohamed Lamin Haddi Mohamed Embarek Lefkir Babait Mohamed Khuna Babait
Sentenced to 20 years in prison: Mohamed Tahlil El Bachir Khadda Abdallahi Toubali
Granted liberty: Deich Eddaf condemned to six and a half years, which is less than the time he has so far spent in prison. Daf had been sentenced to 25 years by the military court. Larabi El Bakay has been condemned to four and a half years, which is less than the time he has so far spent in prison. The military court had sentenced El Bakay to 25 years.
Two of the Gdeim Izik prisoners were sentenced to time in prison back in 2013, and both of them were again condemned to the two years they had already served in prison. Another member of the group, Hassana Alia, managed to escape to Spain where he resides to date. The military court had sentenced Alia in absentia to life in prison.
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
Leading activists from Western Sahara are condemned to sentences ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment in connection to a mass protest in 2010 denouncing the Saharawi people’s social and economic marginalization in their occupied land; the Gdeim Izik protest camp.
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