The Australian Greens National Conference held in Brisbane on 19 & 20 May 2018 adopted the following resolution on Western Sahara:
“That National Conference:
1. Strongly supports the right of the Saharawi people to self-determination and independence and urge the UN to organise a free and fair referendum on independence in Western Sahara without further delay;
2. Condemns human rights abuses in the areas of Western Sahara occupied by Morocco and urge the UN to extend the mandate of its mission in Western Sahara (MINURSO) to include human rights monitoring and reporting. The territory should also be opened for other international observers, such as NGOs and the media;
12 April 2018
Morocco has recently been engaged in an unprecedented, frenzied media and diplomatic campaign of misinformation and propaganda in which it has threatened to take military action to forcibly annex the Liberated Territories of the Sahrawi Republic (SADR), alleging that the Frente POLISARIO had violated the terms of the 1991 UN-supervised ceasefire in Western Sahara.
The misinformation campaign also involved the dissemination of a series of fabrications and misrepresentations of the realities on the ground, particularly in terms of the geographical scheme enacted under the ceasefire and the related military agreement between the Frente POLISARIO and Morocco. To put the record straight, we would like to clarify the following:
10 March 2018
Last week, the EU Court of Justice ruled that the EU-Morocco fisheries deal is not applicable to Western Sahara or its adjacent waters. The judgement is the latest in a string of legal victories to affirm that Morocco has no sovereignty over Western Sahara or its natural resources. This reality was underscored last month when the High Court of South Africa confirmed that the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic was the rightful owner of 55 tons of phosphate rock aboard the NM Cherry Blossom. The vessel’s cargo – detained in South Africa with phosphates illegally exploited in Western Sahara and bound for New Zealand – will now be returned to the Saharawi people.
Read the judgment here:
Since neither the Fisheries Partnership Agreement between the European Community and the Kingdom of Morocco nor the Protocol between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco setting out the fishing opportunities and financial contribution provided for in the Fisheries Partnership Agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco are applicable to the waters adjacent to the territory of Western Sahara, consideration of the first question referred for a preliminary ruling has revealed nothing capable of affecting the validity of Council Regulation (EC) No 764/2006 of 22 May 2006 on the conclusion of that agreement, Council Decision 2013/785/EU of 16 December 2013 on the conclusion of that protocol, and Council Regulation (EU) No 1270/2013 of 15 November 2013 on the allocation of fishing opportunities under that protocol, in the light of Article 3(5) TEU.
Read the judgment here
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Leigh Day, 5 February 2018
“European Union Court of Justice’s Advocate General Melchior Wathelet has handed down his opinion this week on the legal claims by Western Sahara Campaign UK’s (WSCUK) before the European Court of Justice finding that the European Union had failed to respect the right of the (continued….)
Read the full post
Court of Justice of the European Union
Press Release No 01/18
Luxembourg, 10 January 2018
According to Advocate General Wathelet, the Fisheries Agreement concluded between the EU and Morocco is invalid because it applies to the Western Sahara and its adjacent waters.
8 January 2018
The following is a near-verbatim transcript of today’s noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General.
As you saw over the weekend, the Secretary-General issued a statement on Western Sahara, in which he said he was deeply concerned about recent increased tensions in the vicinity of Guerguerat, in the Buffer Strip between the Moroccan berm and the Mauritanian border. He underlined that the withdrawal of Frente Polisario elements from Guerguerat in April 2017, together with the earlier withdrawal of Moroccan elements from the area, was critical to creating an environment conducive to the resumption of dialogue under the auspices of his Personal Envoy, Horst Kohler. The Secretary-General called on the parties to exercise maximum restraint and to avoid escalating tensions. Regular civilian and commercial traffic should not be obstructed and no action should be taken which may constitute a change to the status quo of the Buffer Strip.