Western Sahara. Twenty-four Western Saharians were sentenced in February to lengthy prison sentences for interference with violence in connection with the Moroccan forces in 2010 storming the Gadaym Izik protest camp near the unofficial capital of Western Sahara in El-Aaiún. The convicted lawyers reported that they had suffered “inhuman treatment” in the detention center.
UN envoy Christopher Ross visited Western Sahara in March and met both local civilian leaders and Mohamed Abdelaziz, president of the self-proclaimed Saharan Arab Democratic Republic (SADR). In connection with the visit, a series of demonstrations were held which, according to Abdelaziz, were brutally beaten down as soldiers, among others. tore the clothes of female protesters and threatened them with rape.
The United Nations Security Council voted unanimously on April 25 to extend a resolution extending the mandate of MINURSO (UN Monitoring Force for Western Sahara) to 2014. Ross had recommended that the force should also monitor respect for human rights, but Morocco, which had a place among The Security Council’s non-permanent members, it stopped writing.