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March 2011

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Five of FIACAT’s monthly appeals in 2010 have been followed up. Here are their summaries.

Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh, a Chadian opposition politician, reported to have disappeared for more than a year
Appeal proposed by ACAT France – February 2010

Two months away from the presidential elections, Idriss Deby Itno, the President of Chad, seems to be on the point of organising a spectacular trial following the removal to his own home by soldiers of the presidential guard of the leader Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh. According to sources close to those in power in Chad, the dictator is in the process of bowing to the demand of Nicolas Sarkozy, President of the French Republic, made during his visit in Paris at the beginning of February 2011.

The Gaza strip asphyxiated
Appeal proposed by ACAT Luxembourg – May 2010

The measures taken by Israel to “relax” the illegal blockade of Gaza, in the face of strong international pressure, have changed very little the fate of the civilian population of Gaza, according to a document published in November 2010 by 22 organisations working in the field of development, defence of human rights and the building of peace (as testified by the collective document of 30 November 2010 – Hopes reduced to nothing – Prolongation of the blockade of Gaza – available on the website of Amnesty International).
Israel has not respected the undertakings promised, for example the one to increase the import of materials for constructing schools, health centres, houses or sewage treatment plants which were seriously damaged in the military offensive of the end of 2008.

Appeal for the creation of an independent international commission of enquiry two months after the assassination of Floribert CHEBEYA BAHIZIRE.
Appeal proposed by ACAT DRC - August 2010

The trial of the presumed assassins of Floribert Chebeya, (leader of the association The Voice of the Voiceless, who was working on very sensitive documents such as the massacres perpetrated in
the Lower Congo, notably at the start of 2007, and on a series of arbitrary arrests and forced disappearances) finally began at the end of 2010 in the DRC.
Eight policemen have since then been tried for “association with malefactors, kidnapping, assassination and terrorism” before a military Court. This appears to have permitted General John Numbi, the principal suspect in the affair, to “escape from justice” because he cannot be tried before that Court. John Numbi, who has therefore not been touched in this affair, has nevertheless been suspended from his duties.
His subaltern, Colonel Daniel Mukalay, head of the special police services, is one of the officers currently being tried by the Court. He has never denied the existence of a rendezvous between Numbi and Chebeya, but has never ceased, from the start of the trial, to affirm that the interview never took place. Mukalay appeared very nervous in the face of affirmations by a witness who had been on the police premises on the evening of 1st June and who swears that on the contrary he saw Floribert Chebeya there.

Norboy Holjigitov, a human rights defender aged 60, detained in an Uzbek prison, is in a very worrying state of health.
Appeal proposed by ACAT-France and ACAT-Germany – September 2010

The state of health of Norboy Holjigitov remains worrying. His son has several times requested the prison administration to transfer him to a prison hospital, but is request is systematically rejected. On 24 January 2011, however, the prison governor had announced that Norboy would be sent to the hospital. Norboy was happy, but in the end, he was transferred, together with two other prisoners, to the provisional detention centre in Koson (Qashqadaryo region) where they remained for 4 days.
On his return, on 28 January, he learned from the other prisoners that the International Committee of the Red Cross had come on 24-28 January in order to check the conditions of detention in the prison. All the detainees had been forced to tell them that there were no problems. According to Norboy, he had been transferred because the administration wanted to conceal the gravely ill detainees like him.
Norboy also informed his son that he had been excluded from the list of people benefiting from the amnesty, because he had again been arbitrarily accused of violating the internal rules.

A child killed by soldiers’ bullets
Appeal proposed by ACAT Luxembourg – December 2010

After the death by a bullet of the boy Al Nagem Al Qarhi, violent confrontations burst out in the camp of Gdim Izik and at Laayoune, when the Moroccan security forces took action to have the camp evacuated. Thirteen people, eleven members of the security forces and two Sahrouis, were killed as a result of this violence, but it was not possible to establish the exact circumstances of these events. The security forces arrested about 200 Sahraouis during the following days and weeks. According to their testimony, borne out by the scars and visible wounds covering most of them, they had been beaten, tortured or maltreated by the Moroccan authorities at the moment of their arrest or during their time in police custody. No measures appear to have been taken to investigate these allegations of torture.

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