Meanwhile, the head of the Consulative Council on Human Rights, which wanted publication to stop, was pleased with the verdict. He said the publications would leave the testimonies for examination by historians, not journalists hustling for scoops. If you forgot your government-stooge to English translator at home, he means that he wants to hide the testimony until everyone accused in it is dead.
"The verdict shows that press freedom has moved backwards," he told AFP.
"It is in flagrant contradiction with the spirit of the IER [human rights panel] because it takes away the possibility for citizens to be informed about the leaden years, while the IER wanted precisely the opposite to enable the page to be turned."
I hope Al-Jarida Al-Oula, if it decides the risk of continuing to publish the testimony isn't worth it, is able to give or sell the documents to a foreign paper (I think Spain would be best). That's not an ideal solution, though, because it makes the information more difficult for Moroccans to reach.
The Councill's censorious action seem like a continuation of the schizophrenia in a lot of Moroccan human rights work--the Council's recommendations on the Years of Lead (ending torture, for example) make it sound like it's made up of reasonable people, but their reaction to the publication of Ould Rachid's testimony suggests it's willing to trash Sahrawis to achieve their own goals.
It reminds me of the commission set up to examine human rights after the Years of Lead that was only too eager to disavow Sahrawi concerns and abandon its Sahara Section. I understand the motivation in both cases--specifically, being able to turn to more conservative Moroccans and say, "Sure, we're liberal on these issues, but at least we're not troublemaking Sahrawis"--but that kind of attitude needs to be ditched if human rights are to be respected in either country.
Obviously a lot of reformers like Ali Lmrabet are honest about Western Sahara. There just aren't enough of them.