Video contradicts Amnesty International Claims Over Torture of Prisoners in Western Sahara

In response to the allegations spread by Amnesty International and some international news agency, which claimed that seven inmates from the prison in Laayoune, in the Moroccan territory in what is commonly known as Western Sahara, observed a hunger strike and were tortured by Moroccan authorities, a videotape posted on YouTube challenges the fabricated accusations propagated by the human right watchdog.

The video shows a group of Sahrawi prisoners protesting against the guards who want to inspect their rooms, and one of the detainees was seen screaming and try to hurt himself with broken glass, while the guards were trying to stop him.

In an interview with the Moroccan channel 2MTV, Yahdi Bouchaib, the Wali of Laayoun, Boujdour and Assakiya Alhamra, said that “the news reported by the AFP, regarding seven prisoners in Laayoun prison, is baseless.”

“These prisoners have attacked four prison guards with broken glasses,” he added.

In a news story published on Thursday, AFP claimed that “seven Sahrawi men who were severely beaten at a Moroccan jail in Western Sahara have gone on hunger strike to protest their ill treatment.”

It went to add that the seven prisoners “sustained significant bruising and injuries, with one of them suffering a broken arm and the other limping due to a leg injury.”

Mustapha Ramid, the Justice Minister, said Thursday that he had sent an invitation to Salil Shetty, the secretary general of Amnesty International, to visit Morocco.