War crimes in Western Sahara: Trial of Moroccan official in March in Madrid
Rome (Italy) Feb07,2011(SPS) - The trial on the genocide and the war crimes perpetrated by Moroccan politicians and soldiers, since October 1975 to 1987, will be open on 9- 10 March in Spain, Italian news agency Ansamed reported Sunday.
In this regard, "human rights activist Aminatou Haidar and the 13 Sahrawi refugees living in Tindouf camps in Algeria have been called to appear as witnesses," the same source added.
The investigation entrusted with famous Judge Baltasar Garzon in 2007 was based on a complaint filed in 2006 against 31 Moroccans responsible for the disappearance of 542 persons, after Spain withdrawal in 1975 from its former colony Western Sahara.
The complaint also referred to the death by torture of 56 Saharawis in Moroccan prisons. After the preliminary hearing, Judge Garzon had reduced the number of persons covered by the investigations of 31 to 13 only.
The investigation by Baltasar Garzon had been frozen after notice of a commission, and was returned to Morocco in October 2008, said this source.
The judge, Pablo Ruiz, who replaced Judge Garzon, has reopened the case last November, and called last Thursday, the 14 Saharawi witnesses, said the same source.
The 13 senior Moroccan officials, some of which are still active Hosni Benslimane, the head of the Moroccan Royal Gendarmerie since 1985, are accused of war crimes and genocide.
Benslimane is also covered by international warrant for his alleged role in the assassination of opponent Mehdi Ben Barka in 1965. (SPS)