Testimony of Sultana Khaya Sidi Brahim, Saharawi student tortured

[Marrakech 09.05.07] We organized a sit-in of solidarity with the Sahrawi students at IBNO ZOHR University in Agadir, who were victims of savage attacks. Then we organized a march from the Faculty of Law, passing by the Faculty of Letters, towards the campus of Alqady Ayad University in Marrakech. When we arrived there we were surprised by the violent intervention of all types of Moroccan security forces I was the first of the victims because I was targeted directly. Security agents made a circle around me and were beating and kicking me with their batons and their feet, following this my eye burst. And when I said to them that my eye had been hurt, they did not care and continue beating me on my eye.
After a while the Moroccan forces also brought along Soumaya ABDEDAYEM, Elkouria AMIDANE and Abdelfatah ELYADASSYA. We were asphyxiated by teargas grenades, hot water and another substance which I do not know. Said ELOUAABANE was also wounded, and when I tried to remove his jacket which was torn, I got burnt due to the unknown chemicals which were sprayed on his jacket. We were beaten and kicked. They kept beating us in the University City for more than 40 minutes, until our bodies became like corpses. After that, they took us in an ambulance and tied our hands. Worse, we were also beaten in this ambulance. While we were beaten we were also insulted with racist jibes. The ambulance team joined in too, by encouraging our torturers to beat us, saying: “Kill these Polisario”. They took us by the hair and knocked our heads against the ambulance.
They took us to IBNO TOUFAIL hospital. Although my eye burst, they did nothing but put a bandage on it. I believe it was a male nurse who had put the bandage without saying a word. They drove us, then, to the police station which is in Jamaâ Elafna. While we were going to the hospital and on the road to this police centre, we were slapped and kicked continually. When we got to this centre, they started to take down information relating to our identity. Some policemen, who were standing close to us, insulted the Sahrawis, Polisario and its leaders, especially the president. They said to us: “Listen to the true history of the Sahara. Morocco entered the Sahara by pity for these dirty and undeveloped people”.
Two hours later, they brought in 25 students from the university city and made them sit down opposite us. They also brought 12 Sahrawi students. We all were in a lamentable state and all covered with blood. They also obliged the 25 students to laugh and applaud as an attempt to torture us psychologically. Between 23:30 and midnight, I started vomiting blood. This is why I was driven to the Elmamounia hospital, in an ambulance. The doctor who saw me said that my eye had burst and that they should take me to the Alantaki hospital which they did. And on the way, I was again victim to beatings and kicking. At the Alantaki hospital, the male nurse told me that they had gone and would not return again and that I am now under the hospital’s responsibility. They put me in a room with other women without giving me any treatment.
20 minutes later, a group of police officers arrived and dragged me from the room by the hair in front of the women. At the door of the room I started to vomit blood again. One of them gave me a kick and took me to another room where there was just one other woman. After two or three hours, another team of 8 police officers in plain clothes came to ask me to sign documents. I answered them that I cannot manage to control my hands nor any other parts of my body. One of them took my hand and started to make me write and sign documents of which I couldn’t know the contents because one eye had burst and the other was swollen. They made me sign documents for almost an hour and of course they also took finger prints. Then they went away and left two guards with me. One of them fell asleep on the bed next to me and the other sat down on a chair beside my bed.
In the morning, I asked a girl, who came to visit her mother, to call my family. I wrote the telephone number on her hand. But when she left, the guards followed and threatened her. The girl returned crying to say goodbye to her mother. And when I asked her to help me go to the toilets, she did not even turn to me. After that they put me in a room by myself and I asked them to phone my family many times. Around 11am, a nurse came asked me to buy surgical thread because my eye was to be operated on. I answered her that the only money I had was confiscated by the police and that the best solution was to call my family or one of my friends. At this moment, a plain clothes policeman came in and asked the number which I wanted to call. This is when I phoned one of my friends who came to visit me with a group of other friends, among them a close relative who accepted that I can be operated on.

I lost one eye and my nose was broken and the images speak louder than any words.
Sultana KHAYA, Alantaki hospital, Marrakech – Morocco.
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