Bring Mehdi Back!

A French judge, Patrick Ramaël, launched yesterday five international arrest warrants against high-ranking Moroccan personalities, well established in the State Apparatus and the Moroccan army. They are suspected of being involved in the abduction (in October 29, 1965 in Paris) and subsequent murder, of the historic Moroccan opposition figure, Mehdi ben Barka. The suspects are namely: Gen. Hosni Benslimane (head of the gendarmerie nationale), Abdelhak Kadiri (former head of the military intelligence), Miloud Tounsi (allegedly a member of the gang who kidnapped Ben Barka in front of Brasserie Lipp), Boubker Hassouni and Abdlehak Achaachi (both members, at the time, of a Moroccan secret unit).

Judge Ramaël visited Morocco in the recent past and tried to interview the aforementioned suspects but has been repeatedly delayed and obstructed by the Moroccan authorities who used all means and the most ludicrous excuses to discourage Ramaël from doing his job.

Forty two years after the death of Ben Barka, and after many frustrations and aborted attempts, all I personally hope is that some form of justice is -at last- unfolding in front of our eyes. The body of Mehdi Ben Barka was never recovered and his family (as well as the bulk of the Moroccan civil society) has been eagerly awaiting for some due process to take place so as they (and their compatriots) can overcome their grief.

To Be Continued…

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