Monthly Archives: September 2015

Unilateral Declaration by Polisario under API accepted by Swiss Federal Council

by Katharine Fortin, Armed Groups and International Law, September 2, 2015

On 21 June 2015, the Polisario Front made the unilateral declaration on behalf of the people of Western Sahara to the Swiss Federal Council that it undertook to apply the 1949 Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocol I to the conflict between it and the Kingdom of Morocco. Remarkably it is the very first time that the Swiss Federal Council has accepted such a declaration by a national liberation movement and a non State entity under international law.

Report >>

South African President calls on the UN to determine a date for the referendum

South African President Mr Jacob Zuma

South African President Mr Jacob Zuma

Sahara Press Service, Pretoria (South Africa), Sept 15, 2015 (SPS)
The South African President, Mr. Jacob Zuma called today on the United Nations to set a date for a referendum of the Saharawi people to decide their fate, in his speech on International Relations Peace and Security to Heads of Missions and Media in Pretoria.(…cont.)

Article >>

Is Europe complicit in the plundering of Western Sahara

Johannes Hautaviita, The Empire Files 17 September 2015

Photo: Sahara Press Service

Photo: Sahara Press Service

In a recent development, which is all too familiar, an Irish oil company San Leon Energy began drilling south of Morocco’s border, on the north-western coast of occupied Western Sahara. For the oil drilling – and other resource extraction – to have legal validity, however, it ought to be carried out with the consent and in the interest of the occupied population.
The Sahrawi people have explicitly stated their opposition to San Leon’s activities.(…cont.)

Article >>

Monarchy’s red lines gag Morocco’s independent media

Reporters Without Borders, 17 September 2015

Reporters Without Borders is very worried about the current state of freedom of information in the Kingdom of Morocco, where French President François Hollande is due to begin a two-day visit on Saturday.
Moroccan journalists who violate the taboos on criticizing Islam, the monarchy or the country’s claim to Western Sahara are liable to receive heavy fines or long jail terms.


Banned Moroccan journalist finally able to work again

After a 10-year ban and a hunger strike, one Moroccan journalist is getting back to work
By Sam Kimball
September 11, 2015

“In the courtyard of his 19th century Andalusian house among the winding alleyways of the city of Tetouan, in Morocco’s verdant Rif Mountains, journalist Ali Lmrabet, 55, types slowly on his laptop, which sits atop a pile of notebooks on a wooden table. (…cont.)


Senator Claire Moore addresses the Senate on Human Rights and Morocco

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

In her speech to the Senate Senator Claire Moore, Labor Senator for Queensland, spoke of the injustice of Morocco’s occupation of Western Sahara for over 40 years, the oppression and human rights abuses endured by the Saharawi, the plight of those in exile in the desert of Algeria and the failure of the United Nations to require Morocco to honour its ceasefire agreement to allow a UN referendum in Western Sahara.
Senator Moore acknowledged the presence in the gallery of a delegation from the Australia Western Sahara Association who have been working tirelessly to ensure that this message is not lost in our community.

Hansard Record 8 September 2015


The Guardian, 28 August 2015; Mariem Hassan obituary

Robin Denselow, The Guardian, 28/08/2015
Mariem Hassan,the singer whose protest songs on behalf of her Sahrawi people in north Africa brought her international recognition has died of bone cancer aged 57, in a desert refugee camp for the Sahrawi people in south-west Algeria. She used her powerful voice to publicise the plight of those who were forced to flee from their homeland when Morocco took control of Western Sahara in 1975.

Read Guardian article and view video