Yearly Archives: 2012

Ban Ki-moon rejects Morocco calls to replace Western Sahara envoy

August 26, 2012, RECORDER REPORT

UN leader Ban Ki-moon on Saturday told Morocco’s monarch he would not give in to demands to change his peace envoy on the Western Sahara conflict, diplomats said.

Morocco announced in May that it no longer has confidence in UN envoy Christopher Ross, who it accused of being “unbalanced and biased” in attempts to mediate a solution for the disputed territory at the heart of one of Africa’s oldest conflicts.

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“No other choice” than self-determination for Western Sahara

Peter Kenworthy, NTA Newstime Africa, 
“There is no other choice but self-determination,” says a lady interviewed in a new documentary about Western Sahara made by 31-year-old English independent film-maker and journalist, Dominic Brown. She is the wife of one of the many activists belonging to Western Sahara’s indigenous population, the Saharawis, who have been imprisoned and tortured for campaigning for independence for Africa’s last colony….(cont.)


Kerry Kennedy leads high level delegation to assess human rights situation

21 August : Press release

On Thursday 23 August Kerry Kennedy of the Robert F Kennedy Center and Mary Lawlor, Founder and Executive Director, Front Line Defenders will take part in a high level delegation to Western Sahara to assess the human rights situation on the ground in both Moroccan-controlled Western Sahara and in the Sahrawi refugee camps in Algeria.

Read article and press release >>

New phosphate vessel arrives in Tasmania

9 August 2012
The vessel ‘Alycia’ arrived on Tuesday 7 August 2012 at Risdon dock in Hobart, ready to discharge its controversial cargo of phosphate from occupied Western Sahara for the local fertilizer producer Impact Fertilisers.

The Tasmanian fertiliser company Impact has for a number of years purchased phosphate rock from occupied Western Sahara.

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Who speaks For Fetim Salam?

Overland : Online Blog, 24 July 2012

Carmela Baranowska writes about Robbed of Truth: The Western Sahara Conflict and the Ethics of Documentary Filmmaking (directed and produced by Carlos González)

Fetim Salam is a refugee who lives in a remote and inhospitable part of North Africa. She is one of an estimated twelve million refugees worldwide. However, her life is neither obscure nor forgotten. Fetim Salam is represented in two recent documentaries, Stolen (directed by Violeta Ayala and Dan Fallshaw; produced by Violeta Ayala, Dan Fallshaw and Tom Zubrycki) and Robbed of Truth: The Western Sahara Conflict and the Ethics of Documentary Filmmaking (directed and produced by Carlos González)

Continue reading ‘Who speaks for Fetim Salam?’ >>

Breaking news: kidnapped aid workers freed

MADRID/BAMAKO (Reuters) – An Italian and two Spanish hostages were freed in northern Mali on Wednesday by the al Qaeda-linked MUJWA Islamist group, the Spanish government said on Wednesday.

The three aid workers were seized in a refugee camp near Tindouf, Algeria, last October and were then believed to have been transferred to northern Mali, which is now controlled by a mix of Islamist groups.


Why Morocco must not be allowed to join the African Union

New Statesman, 6 June 2012
by Tom Stevenson

What does Morocco mean to an Englishman?” George Orwell asked in one of his finer essays. “Camels, castles, palm-trees, Foreign Legionnaires, brass trays and bandits.” That was 1939. But whatever Morocco means to an Englishman today it probably isn’t “occupation, refugees, and landmines”.
Morocco is a standard tourist destination and is held up as a model for Arab and African development alike. It may, therefore, come as something of a shock to hear that Morocco is the only African country excluded from membership of the African Union (Madagascar, Mali, and Guinea-Bissau have all been “suspended” since 2009 and 2012 respectively).


The Western Sahara Peace Process: Tragedy or Farce?

e-International Relations, 10 May 2012
By Jacob Mundy

At the end of every April, a small drama plays out in the UN Security Council. This is when the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO, its French acronym) comes up for its annual renewal. Western Sahara — Africa’s last colony according to the United Nations — is largely ignored by the Security Council the other eleven months of the year.