Jean Lambert visited Downing Street today to support the Western Sahara Campaign as they delivered a letter highlighting the plight of three imprisoned human rights workers from the north-west African territory of Western Sahara. Known as the Casablanca 3, the trio have been imprisoned in Morocco for a year without trial and with the threat of the death penalty hanging over them.
The letter urged Prime Minister David Cameron and Foreign Secretary William Hague to help ensure the human rights workers have a “free and fair trial, leading to their unconditional release”.
Jean was a co-signatory on the letter, which was also signed by film director Ken Loach, MPs Jeremy Corbyn, Caroline Lucas, Katy Clark, Jonathan Edwards and Paul Flynn, and Marlyn Glen MSP.
Below is the letter in full:
Dear Mr Cameron / Mr Hague,
On 8th October 2009 seven of Western Sahara’s most prominent human rights defenders were arrested by Moroccan authorities on their arrival back in Casablanca from a visit to the Saharawi refugee camps in the Algerian desert. One year on and three of the seven – Brahim Dahane, president of ASVDH, Ali Salem Tamek, Vice-President of CODESA, Ahmed Naciri vice president Samara Saharawi Human Rights Committee – remain imprisoned in Sale jail, Rabat.
They have been accused of treason, a charge punishable by death and have been held without trial in breach of international law. Their ongoing detention has been condemned by groups including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch
On this, the first anniversary of their arrest, 73 Saharawi human rights defenders from the Western Sahara, a territory occupied unlawfully by Morocco for over 35 years, are joining parliamentarians, jurists and public figures from around the world to call on the British government to increase its diplomatic efforts to secure their immediate and unconditional release.
The WSC works in solidarity with the Saharawi people to generate political support in order to advance their right to self-determination and promote their human rights.
For more information on the WSC visit: http://www.westelijkesahara.be