The Australia Western Sahara Association (AWSA) is delighted that the Australian Labor Party (ALP) expressed support for self-determination for the people of Western Sahara, at its National Conference in Brisbane on 17-19 August 2023.
The motion adopted at the recent ALP Conference reads: “Labor strongly supports the United Nations in its efforts to enable the people of Western Sahara to exercise their inalienable right to self-determination in accordance with United Nations resolutions and the 1990 Settlement Plan and supports the organisation without delay of the promised UN referendum of self-determination. In pursuit of individual freedom and human rights, Labor supports the United Nations mandating its mission MINURSO to monitor and report on the human rights situation in the Territory.”
See attached proposed resolution and media release below.
In Canberra on Thursday, May 25th, three AWSA members and Western Sahara representative to Australia Kamal Fadel were intimidated by Moroccan embassy staff. Kamal Fadel was directly blocked whilst attempting to enter Albert Hall, for an event commemorating the establishment of the Organisation of African Unity (now the African Union).
They were officially invited to this event, and had every intention of peacefully attending it. With the help of ambassadors accredited to Australia, all four were safely escorted inside.
The Saharawi struggle for independence against the Moroccan regime is a Pan-Africanist struggle. It is clear that neocolonial occupiers of Western Sahara do not value this principle.
Article from the Guardian (written by Ben Doherty), below:
Two student societies from the University of Sydney have organised a forum on “The Struggle for National Liberation in Western Sahara”, in collaboration with AWSA. The Political Economy Society (EcopSoc) and the Autonomous Collective Against Racism (ACAR) will host Polisario representative Kamal Fadel and Dr Randi Irwin of the University of Newcastle on Thursday, May 18th at 18:00.
All members are encouraged to attend this event. Kamal and Randi will discuss the colonial history of the region, its current impacts on Australian affairs, strategies for decolonisation and more. It appropriately falls between the 50th anniversary of both the founding of the Polisario Front and commencement of the armed struggle at El-Khanga.
A Q&A session will follow, as well as a chance to discuss all matters Western Sahara at Hermann’s bar thereafter! The Forum will take place on Gadigal Land, in the Quad Refectory Room H113 (USyd, Camperdown/ Darlington). See event flyer and Facebook page below.
Madrid-based NGO Nomads HRC have collated a comprehensive, searchable online database of films on Western Sahara. Contact information and links are provided to films or documentaries that are publicly available. This is an open, collaborative project, so do contact Nomads if you have any queries or notice any errors. See links below.
In response to increasing concerns about the status and safety of Sahrawi activists in Western Sahara, particularly following five separate issues in April, Amnesty International has issued a call for an investigation into police and security forces who are said to have assaulted five Sahrawi women who voiced support for Sultana Khaya.
The details of the attack are serious and are outlined in Amnesty’s call for action following its own investigation. Amnesty’s extensive report on the violence faced by the five women was published on 27 May and can be found here.
The forum is to be held in Tunisia in August 2022. Friends of Western Sahara Japan and Africa Japan Forum (AJF) are calling on the Japanese government to include Western Sahara just like the EU-AU summit did in Brussels.
They demand that Western Sahara (SADR) be included in the list of invitees of the Japanese government. As the EU-AU summit in last February included Western Sahara, there is no reason that Japan excludes it.
‘We are being told by the West to simply accept our reality—the reality of occupation,’ Sahrawi journalist Nazha El Khalidi tells Tribune. ‘Why don’t we have the same right to self-determination as the Ukrainians? This hypocrisy shows you the real face of Europe and Spain, who are more interested in our land and resources than in the people of Western Sahara.’ (cont….)