Sahrawis camping in Tindouf in Algeria : Refugees, or moved and detained.

While the international community is looking for a solution to the Saharan conflict, waiting that the separated Sahrawi families can finally be together, of which status do those camping in Tindouf benefit today? If they are considered as moved, we may possibly understand why they are neither counted nor protected. The legal deficit of the Geneva Convention of 1951 does not include the moved persons of the international protection. For Morocco, many among those camping in Tindouf come from neighboring countries mainly Mali, Mauritania and even the Algerian Sahara. They have been attracted by the food assistance distributed in Tindouf camps. The Moroccan government protests against the qualifier refugee of the Sahrawis and considers them as persons who have not deliberately left their country and who have not opted for exile but who have been forced to leave their region in the wake of the outside pressures.

Admitting that they are wrongly or rightly considered as refugees, the Geneva Convention of 1951, by virtue of which they benefit from this status, lists also in its article (1C) the case of suspension and exclusion of refugee quality when the circumstances in the wake of which the person having been recognized as refugee exist no more. All observers agree to confirm that these circumstances exist no more in the case of Sahrawis camping in Tindouf. Most of the Sahrawis have been integrated into the global Moroccan society and reject the chimerical dream of separatism. Indicators of this integration are numerous. There are thus persons who have fled and still flee Tindouf camps in Algeria to definitively go back home where they are wholeheartedly welcomed. Once integrated, they contribute to the development of their region and participate in the local and national elections. Many among them have become deputies or have important functions within the Moroccan executive body. Consequently, we cannot talk about Sahrawi refugees, but rather about moved and detained persons in camps and who claim for return right.
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