Visit of Rabab Amidane to Norway/Sweden, July 21st to August 6th 2007


Report 1, August 1st

It has been a busy week for the 22 year old Sahrawi student and human rights activist Rabab Amidane. Amidane is on a 16 day tour to Norway/Sweden, meeting with youth and student organisations. The aim of her tour is to give testimony of the frequent attacks committed against Sahrawis at universities and other places of higher education in Morocco and Western Sahara.
On the first day of her stay in Norway, July 21st, Amidane was international guest at the summer camp of the Young Liberal Party, on which she gave a presentation about the Sahrawi students' situation. The same day, Amidane also met the Norwegian Prime Minister, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg (picture), who told that when he was the leader of the Young Liberal Party, they visited Polisario in Algeria. Amidane thanked Stoltenberg for the Norwegian foreign policy on the Western Sahara question.

Amidane also met with parliamentarian Mr. Truls Wickholm, as well as several of the leaders of the Labour Youth.
August 24th to 26th, Amidane spent in Gothenburg, Sweden, meeting with representatives of the student parliament of the Gothenburg University, as well as with the student group of Amnesty International Gothenburg.
Back in Oslo from August 26th, Amidane has met with the Norwegian Student Union and the Norwegian Association of Students. The two organisations, with more than 200.000 members in Norway, expressed their strong support for the struggle that the Sahrawi students are leading. The same was expressed in a meeting with the Norwegian Students' and Academics' International Assistance Fund.
The Rafto House Foundation has written a long story about the work carried out by Amidane, as well as the violations of human rights committed against the Sahrawi students. [norsk]
From Saturday 28th to Wednesday 1st, Amidane participated at the annual summer camp of the Young Liberals of Norway. It is the Young Liberals who invited Amidane to Norway, in collaboration with the Norwegian Children and Youth Council. Amidane had talks with Liberal Party's parliamentarians Mr. Odd Einar Dørum and Ms Trine Skei Grande. Dørum has been minister in two Norwegian governments. Skei Grande asked in April this year a question in the Norwegian parliament regarding what the Norwegian government intends to do for the protection of human rights for the Sahrawi people. The Liberal Party politicians expressed their strong support for the Sahrawi cause, underlining their demand that the Norwegian government recognises the Saharawi Arabic Democratic Republic.
All the organisations that have received Amidane so far signed May 23rd a letter to the Moroccan government demanding the protection of the Sahrawi students. Amidane has given the organisations updates on the attacks that have taken place since the letter was sent.

To be continued...

Rabab Amidane concludes visit to Norway (web of Norwegian Support Committee)

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