Home News Polisario leader summoned to Spanish court over ‘torture’

Polisario leader summoned to Spanish court over ‘torture’

Published on May 03, 2021

A Spanish court has summoned the leader of the Western Saharan independence movement, being treated in Spain for Covid-19, to answer allegations of torture, a legal source told AFP Monday.

Brahim Ghali, who leads the Algeria-backed Polisario Front, has been summoned to appear before the high court on Wednesday, after a dissident member of the Front made the accusations against him.

But the same legal source said it was not clear if Ghali would be able to appear, given his medical condition. Local press reports says he has been receiving treatment at a hospital in Logrono, northern Spain, since late April.

Ghalil’s presence in Spain has been a diplomatic headache for the government, even though Madrid insists he was allowed in on strictly humanitarian grounds.

Last month Morocco summoned the Spanish ambassador to complain about Ghalil’s presence there.

The status of Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony which the United Nations classifies as a “non-self-governing territory”, has for decades pitted Morocco against the Polisario, who demand a referendum on an independent state.