Senegalese Minister of Justice Confirms Release of 344 Prisoners: Political or Common Crimes?

2024-02-22 07:49:39

The Senegalese Minister of Justice confirms the release of 344 people since Thursday February 15, 2024. Measures intended to “ appease » public space while the country is still waiting for a date for the presidential election initially scheduled for February 25. The collective of prisoners assures, contrary to the minister, that these people were political prisoners.

Published on: 02/22/2024 – 08:49 Modified on: 02/22/2024 – 08:53

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With our correspondent in Dakar, Léa-Lisa Westerhoff

If 272 releases are still to follow in Dakar, Aissata Tall Sall affirms that these are in no case political releases of prisoners of conscience. In total, the Minister of Justice, Aïssata Tall Sall, therefore speaks of a little more than 600 people who must be released in the coming days, all prosecuted for common crimes, according to her.

The representatives of the detainees estimate that there are more than 1,600 people incarcerated following the opposition demonstrations in Senegal since 2021. And for Lamine Bara Diop, alias Diop Taïf, coordinator of the collective of detainees, no doubt, these arrests took place for political reasons to quell the opposition: “ They were arrested arbitrarily, everyone knows that. For example, there are ordinary Senegalese people. »

« We sabotaged their future »

Diop Taïf calls for the release of all political detainees as well as their compensation: “ We must compensate these people because we sabotaged their future, we arrested them and they were working. Social layers were affected: there were masons going to work, there were carpenters, there were shoemakers, they were all arrested and imprisoned. How did they manage to get by, to support their families? All these people are demanding justice after liberation. »

The collective of prisoners therefore intends to sue the State and demand compensation for all those who spent months in preventive detention without having been tried or who were ultimately acquitted.

Read alsoRelease of prisoners in Senegal: files are assessed “case by case”

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