The organisation expresses through a communiqué that it has taken a triggering incident such as the massive arrival of immigrants in Ceuta for the Government to react to the arrival of the Polisario Front leader in Spain

El Fórum Canario Saharaui insiste en la gravedad de la presencia de Brahim Ghali en España

Atalayar_Brahim Ghali canario

The Fórum Canario Saharaui has informed in an official statement that the diplomatic crisis that Morocco and Spain are going through is due to the presence of Brahim Ghali in Spain and that the government has not been able to realise the seriousness of the matter until the arrival of a wave of 8,000 immigrants in Ceuta.

Full text of the statement of the Fórum Canario Saharaui on the situation of Brahim Ghali:

In line with our previous communiqués, and in order to update our official position as we have been doing in recent weeks with each successive press release to the media, we want to express several issues regarding the presence in Logroño of the Secretary General of the Polisario Front, Brahim Ghali. Especially in the light of the events that took place this week in the border area of Ceuta, which is nothing more than a consequence of everything that we in the Saharawi Canary Islands Forum have been warning about since the arrival of this person. In any case, we condemn the events that took place this week in Ceuta, in the hope that order will be fully restored and calm will return, in the hope that we will not see such deplorable images again and that the good neighbourly relations between the two countries, which are as important as they are necessary, will be restored.

With regard to the political crisis that this affair has become, although last week we were already noting with some surprise and indifference how little importance this event had had within the Spanish parliamentary arc in the political debate since Ghali's arrival in Spain, It has taken a triggering incident such as the one in Ceuta for this political class to react to an episode as serious as Brahim Ghali's arrival in Spain, full of murkiness and trickery, with the complicity of the Spanish government and in collusion with the Algerian government and the Polisario Front itself.

On the one hand, as far as the Spanish government itself is concerned, and particularly the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya, who, as we well know, has always been permanently out of the loop on an issue of the greatest international interest, and especially crucial for our southern neighbour, the Sahara question. In the first place, they underestimated the possible diplomatic consequences that could arise in the short term, as has finally happened.

Proof of this is the astonishingly calm manner in which, while an unparalleled crisis was brewing here, of which Morocco had been warning in previous weeks once Ghali's arrival was known, the minister travelled to South America and the president to Africa, among other places. Secondly, she was unaware of the various cases pending before the Spanish justice system against Brahim Ghali, a person whose record of human rights violations has been called into question. Whether it was the minister's lack of concern about the magnitude of these cases, or her ignorance of them (we understand that she is not lacking in advisors), her incompetence and naivety in this matter is beyond doubt, in a position that we believe is starting to become too big for her.

Since Brahim Ghali's stay in Logroño was kept secret and its leak to the press was unexpected by the government itself, we conclude that they have been tiptoeing around the issue, while it has gone unnoticed by the opposition and public opinion during the past month. For a few weeks they managed to do so with little political and social pressure, but this week's events have caused the situation to blow up in their faces, and rightly so. On the other hand, there are the opposition parties, which have also been dragging their heels throughout the Ghali affair. While the Popular Party took some steps in the week prior to the crisis in Ceuta, most have remained silent, either out of affinity with the Polisario in the case of the parties on the left or those representing peripheral nationalisms, or for fear that criticism of the government over Ghali's arrival in Spain would be interpreted as tacit support for Morocco, and thus dissatisfy their electorate, as in the case of the parties on the right of the parliamentary spectrum.

Atalayar_Brahim Ghali canario

In any case, what lies at the heart of the matter is the absolute disdain and even ignorance of our political class for an issue, the Sahara question, which, despite its historical ties with Spain, does not matter to them in the slightest, unless they can gain electoral advantage by using it opportunistically. In fact, as an example, statements such as "the reception of the Polisario leader is just Morocco's excuse for this migratory invasion in Ceuta" made yesterday by the VOX spokesperson in Congress, Macarena Olona, seem to us to be out of place, when one does not have to be very intelligent to know that this issue, both that of Ghali in particular and that of the Sahara in general, is an issue that is confined to the political and diplomatic sphere, being also transcendental for Morocco and its public opinion, where it makes the headlines every day. We also condemn the use of this sensitive issue by Puigdemont and the Catalan pro-independence movement in Waterloo, with their usual provocative outbursts.

Likewise, we recall for the umpteenth time that we are still awaiting the corresponding explanations about the ins and outs of Brahim Ghali's arrival in Spain at night and with malice aforethought, as we have demanded in previous communiqués. As well as many other details about his entry that remain invisible to the general public due to the information blackout imposed by the government, and more specifically by its Ministry of Foreign Affairs. That is why we applaud the fact that what we demanded in our previous communiqué regarding the urgent appearance of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya, in Parliament, to give the appropriate explanations and answer the corresponding questions about her intolerable behaviour during the last few weeks, which has led to the unfortunate incidents in Ceuta, has been attended to.

As far as the judicial issue is concerned, we would like to recall once again, first of all, and as a matter of urgency, the imperative need to place the aforementioned Ghali in police custody in the San Pedro Hospital in Logroño, where he is currently in hospital, until he is discharged and can make a statement. The absence of precautionary measures decreed by Judge Pedraz only increases the risk of flight and repetition of the crime, without taking into account the singularities of the person in question. In other words, if he sneaked into Spain, avoiding the knowledge of his presence in our country using a false identity, we have no doubt that he will do the same to leave Spanish soil once he has been recovered, using similar tricks.

Finally, we welcome the slow but sure steps that justice is taking, with the reopening this week by Judge Pedraz of the Audiencia Nacional, of the main or longest running lawsuit (since 2007, no less) of the several that Ghali has pending. Originally filed by the association ASADEDH and by three individuals (Saadani Maoulainine, Hosein Baida and Dahi Aguai), according to the lawyers handling this case, there is more than enough evidence (testimonies, experts, etc.) to more than justify an investigation and conviction of Brahim Ghali. We also welcome the new complaint filed against Ghali before the Public Prosecutor's Office of La Rioja for falsification of documents when he was admitted to the San Pedro Hospital in Logroño, and also transferred to the Public Prosecutor's Office of the Audiencia Nacional.

This type of concatenation of crimes and irregularities, which for any citizen would entail the corresponding sanction, should not go unpunished for another just because he is who he is and because he was secretly protected by our government. That, in any case, makes it an even more serious act that should have the corresponding political consequences, independently of events such as those of this week in Ceuta.