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Date of posting : September 22, 2020

Sahrawi NGO Questions HRC on Slavery Practices Suffered by Women in Tindouf Camps

 The Sahara Center for Studies and Research on Development and Human Rights questioned, on Wednesday, the Human Rights Council (HRC) about slavery practices suffered by women in the Tindouf camps on Algerian soil.

Speaking by videoconference as part of a debate on slavery, on the occasion of the 45th session of the HRC, chairman of the Center, Shaibata Mrabih Rabaou, drew attention to the situation “of women in these camps controlled by the polisario, in Algerian territory, who endure serious violence and slavery practices that degrade their dignity”.

“Slavery has become a general and common phenomenon in these camps according to many international human rights agencies,” he added, recalling reports and testimonies that have “repeatedly pointed out that women in these camps live in a kind of slavery and servitude, and pay exorbitant taxes while silently enduring all forms of deprivation”.

In this sense, he outlined abuses committed against women living in these camps, citing cases of “rape, forced childbirth, or detention against their will”. He also referred to the suffering of some mothers who see “their children deported at a young age without their consent to other countries where they are brainwashed and subjected to ideological frameworks contrary to their religion and culture”.

Recalling that United Nations resolutions and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women prohibit such practices, Shaibata noted that “Algeria and the armed militias of the +polisario” continue to denigrate the most basic rights of women in flagrant violation of international law”.

In this regard, he made an urgent appeal to the Human Rights Council and the international community “to put an end to the violations of women’s rights in these camps where a culture of impunity reigns”.