GENEVA / TUNIS - August 18 - On 1 September 2003 the ICRC repatriated 243 Moroccan prisoners released by the Polisario Front. Prisoners are coming back home after long years spent in captivity - one of them had been detained in Algeria since January 1975.
-Thierry Gassmann / ICRC
The Polisario Front today released all the Moroccan prisoners in its custody. They will be repatriated to Morocco under the auspices of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Their release follows mediation by the United States.
The ICRC visited the prisoners regularly and welcomes their release. Their repatriation ends a long period of internment and marks an important step in resolving the humanitarian consequences of the conflict in the Western Sahara.
The ICRC will pursue its efforts to ensure that the fate of all those reported missing in connection with this conflict is established, and that families suffering the uncertainty of not knowing what has happened to their relatives finally obtain this information.