Moroccan government turns to AIPAC in effort to defend occupation in Western Sahara | Human Rights and the Will to be free | Scoop.it

A recent series of events seem to indicate that the Moroccan government has enlisted the services of a prominent foreign policy lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), to help defend Morocco's occupation in Western Sahara.  While both Israel and Morocco have long been engaged in internationally recognized occupations, it now appears that they are working together to undermine the work of the congressional commission responsible for working to uphold the United States' purported commitment to human rights.  

In April of this year, Rep. Frank Wolf and Rep. Jim McGovern, the Co-Chairs of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, sent a letter to Secretary of State Kerry regarding human rights violations in the Moroccan occupied Western Sahara.  The letter expressed support for an expanded human rights monitoring and reporting mandate for the U.N. Mission of the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO).  The letter also called on the 'U.S. to encourage Morocco to immediately halt the harassment, intimidation, and arbitrary arrest and detention of pro-Independence Sahrawi; to call for the release of Sahrawi prisoners imprisoned for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression and associations [...].'  Sahrawis, like many Palestinians, live under an internationally recognized occupation and have long been deprived of basic rights.  Although the occupations differ in many ways, both Palestinians and Sahrawis are subject to systematic discrimination, perpetual displacement, and routine human rights abuses.  ...

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