Spain has acted in connivance with Algeria to admit secretly at a Spanish hospital a separatist leader sued for war crimes and rape to help him evade justice.
Prior to the start of the preliminary hearing, Algiers sent a presidential plane to Spain to bring Ghali back to his rear base in Algeria and evade thus justice, but the plane had to make a U-turn in the air.
The Spanish government has shown a disregard for its own judiciary in admitting Ghali under a false name. Ghali is sued in Spain by Spanish and Moroccan individuals as well as the Sahraoui Association for the defense of human rights.
His case has put the Spanish judiciary before the independence test and shown that Spain has violated the Schengen norms by admitting Ghali, an act it has tried to sugar coat as a humanitarian gesture.
Rabat, however, has denounced the secrecy shrouding Ghali’s hospitalization in Spain and argued that humanitarian acts do not take place in the dark. Spain failed to inform Rabat because it wanted to please the military regime in Algeria by helping Ghali avoid justice.
Spain’s choice to host Ghali is a pre-meditated act. Its connivance with Algeria to flout its own justice is a well-thought decision and Rabat feels betrayed by a neighbor it treated as a partner and an ally.
As Rabat said, the case of Ghali is no longer the heart of the problem. The broken trust and partnership as well as the violated mutual respect is the crisis and Spain has to make its position clear regarding the Sahara.