Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Western Sahara: UN Chief Voices Concern Over Health of Saharawi Activist On Hunger Strike/Moroccan Blogger Bashir Hazem Arrested


UN News Service (New York)

Western Sahara: UN Chief Voices Concern Over Health of Saharawi Activist On Hunger Strike



13 December 2009

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has held talks with the Foreign Minister of Morocco to voice his "grave" concern over an independence activist from Western Sahara who has been on hunger strike since last month.

Aminatou Haidar began her protest at the airport at Lanzarote, on Spain's Canary Islands, after being denied entry into her native Western Sahara in mid-November.

Mr. Ban spoke with Moroccan Foreign Minister Taib Fassi Fihri on Friday to reiterate the United Nation's willingness to take any appropriate action necessary to find a solution to Ms. Haider's situation, in a discussion that touched on the increasing political tension in the region.

Fighting broke out between Morocco and the Frente Polisario after Spain's colonial administration of Western Sahara ended in 1976. Morocco has presented a plan for autonomy, while the Frente Polisario's position is that the territory's final status should be decided in a referendum on self-determination that includes independence as an option.

Last month, Mr. Ban voiced concern over the tensions between the parties to status talks after the recent detention of several groups of Saharawi activists. A UN mission in Western Sahara, known as MINURSO, is entrusted with monitoring a ceasefire reached in September 1991 and organizing a referendum on self-determination.

Copyright © 2009 UN News Service. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com).


Global Voices Advocacy - http://advocacy.globalvoicesonline.org –

Moroccan Blogger Bashir Hazem Arrested

Posted By Jillian York On December 11, 2009 @ 5:14 pm

Moroccan blogger Bashir Hazem was arrested on December 8, 2009 following a protest in Tarjijt, during which students clashed with security forces, after posting a press release about the clash on his blog [1].  He has been interrogated about his blogging, specifically his most recent post, which contained the signatures of a committee of arrested students.

Hazem was detained and put in solitary confinement for a period of time, then rejoined the other detainees in the prison.  Hazem is a 26-year-old student of literature.

A Facebook group [2] [ar] has been created to support blogger Bashir Hazem, who has been detained in Goulmim prison in the south of Morocco for publishing a statement about the intervention of the police force against an inhabitant of the Goulmim, on his blog “Al Boushara” (”the good news”).

According to the President of the Moroccan Bloggers Association, Internet cafes in the city are being monitored in order to prevent Internet users from disseminating information about the event, and to prevent riots.  The authorities have also arrested others suspected of spreading news about the protests, including an Internet cafe employee, for possessing protest materials and flyers.

Hazem will face trial on Monday, December 14, 2009.

Article printed from Global Voices Advocacy: http://advocacy.globalvoicesonline.org

URL to article: http://advocacy.globalvoicesonline.org/2009/12/11/moroccan-blogger-bashir-hazem-arrested/

URLs in this post:

[1] his blog: http://hazzam82.maktoobblog.com/

[2] Facebook group: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=197635778350&v=info


Copyright © 2009 Global Voices Advocacy. CC-Attribution

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