Sahrawi civilian prisoners in Morocco are subjected to harassment and racial discrimination

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Local prison administration Ait Melol 1, on the outskirts of the southern Moroccan city of Agadir, imposed several restrictions on Sahrawi civilian prisoners of the student rank group and integrated them with prisoners of public rights in narrow cells deprived of their own needs.

According to a testimony of the sister of Sahrawi civilian prisoner Abdelmawla Mohamed Al-Hafed, the Sahrawi civilian prisoners of the student rank group were subjected to restrictive measures and moved from their cells to other neighborhoods overcrowded with more than 40 beds in the cell, which threatens their health safety and puts them at risk of infection with COVID-19.

The sister of the Sahrawi civil prisoner added that the prison administration had for some time reduced the walking time, confiscated cash transfers sent by the family, did not allow him and other Sahrawi civilian prisoners to conduct their school revision and preparation classes, in addition to poor health care procedures resulting from negligence of the prison administration, overcrowding of prisoners and not monitoring all cases accurately in order to avoid the spread of infection.

Since the announcement of the outbreak of Coronavirus, many Moroccan prisons have witnessed a rise in infection cases, therefore, many international organizations have called for the release of Sahrawi civilian prisoners in Moroccan prisons, in line with the United Nations’ appeal to preserve the lives of inmates and avoid the transmission of infection among them and to control the pandemic prevailing in all countries of the world.

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