Since many years, many independent media have relayed allegations about the serious violations of human rights within the Polisario Front camps, reminding the international community that the 30 year-old Western Sahara conflict remains a tragedy for the Sahrawi peoples obliged to live in camps, deprived of the least conditions for a decent life. Although figures differ about the number of inhabitants in Tindouf camps, directed by the guerrilla, we can reasonably assume that there are approximately 70 000 persons, living on the humanitarian aid food and clothes. However, it is precisely on the humanitarian aid field that the violation of these peoples’ human rights is practiced, as a complete opacity surrounds the management of food stocks allocated by the different international humanitarian bodies, as well as equipment donations. According to many studies carried out by NGOs, it seems that about 68% of the aid given to the population of Tindouf is taken hold of by the Front leadership, and then half of it is resold in the markets of North Mauritania, the other half being used as exchange currency to purchase personal estates.
This situation, regularly denounced by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), has become possible due to two main factors: firstly, the Polisario Front officials overestimated the number of Sahrawi people, making them reach 160 000 Sahrawis, whereas the EU, in its highest estimation does not count more than 80 000. Secondly, the Algerian army’s complicity, itself “client” of a part of the misappropriated stocks.