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WSAF works year-round to raise awareness and push for action on human rights and the referendum in Western Sahara.
Read articles, reports, books, and news updates on human rights and the referendum in Western Sahara.
At the end of April each year, the UN Security Council convenes to discuss the MINURSO mandate, and to decide whether to renew the mandate. For several years, the mandate has been renewed without a human rights monitoring mechanism being added. Until a free and fair referendum is carried out in Western Sahara, WSAF will continue to advocate for human rights monitoring to be included in the MINURSO mandate. Human rights abuses are regularly reported from Western Sahara. This includes violations of freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, freedom of movement, the right to a fair trial, the right to an education, freedom from torture, and, of course, the right to self-determination. WSAF does not have a position with regards to the outcome of a referendum, only that the process should be free and fair. This means that independence must be an option for those deemed eligible to vote by the UN. Read on for resources, and to learn more about the WSAF campaign
The departure of Hörst Kohler and John Bolton from their positions in the United Nations and US government respectively has left the push for a long-awaited referendum in Western Sahara in limbo once again. Chosen as UN Special Envoy to Western Sahara in 2017, Kohler pushed to restart talks between the involved parties that had Read more about The Lack of Leadership[…]
Groups and individuals from around the world have begun writing to the UN Security Council to demand action on the Western Sahara conflict in the run-up to the vote on the renewal of MINURSO. The first of those letters was from Saharawi civil society groups from the Occupied Territories of Western Sahara and the Saharawi Read more about Time for Action[…]
Over the last year, Horst Köhler, the UN Secretary-General’s Personal Envoy to Western Sahara, has made some progress. In December 2018, he organised the first roundtable meeting of the parties to the conflict, Morocco and the POLISARIO Front, and of Algeria and Mauritania. Conflict specialists the International Crisis Group have identified this as a sign Read more about WSAF Briefing 2019: The Time is Now[…]
Open letter to the UN Security Council from international Western Sahara solidarity groups Your Excellency As representatives of human rights organisations, civil society, and solidarity groups from around the world, we are writing to you to place on record our strong belief that the status quo in Western Sahara is unacceptable. We urge the Security Read more about Open Letter to the UN Security Council[…]
90 organisations from across the world have written to members of UN Security Council, demanding an end to Moroccan abuses and a date for the referendum. The following letter was sent to all members of the UN Security Council in advance of the upcoming negotiations on Western Sahara: End Moroccan Impunity in Western Sahara Read more about We demand that the UNSC take action[…]
Morocco’s occupation of Western Sahara is all about the money. Morocco benefits economically from its occupation of Western Sahara by plundering the natural resources of the territory; resources that could enable the rightful owners of the land, the Saharawi, to support all of their people. The natural resources Morocco is plundering from Western Sahara include: Read more about All about the money: Morocco’s plundering of Western Sahara[…]
Since 2012, our partners Adala UK have been reporting on the unfair trials of Saharawis, detained for exercising their freedom of expression with regard their right to self-determination. The list of human rights abuses in relation to unfair trials and imprisonment is a long one for the Saharawis living under Moroccan occupation: trials in military Read more about Moroccan miscarriages of justice: unfair trials for Saharawis[…]
Over the last few years the number of international independent human rights observers that Morocco has expelled from the Occupied Territories of Western Sahara has been rapidly increasing. Adala UK and the Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara have reported on this a number of times recently. Adala UK reports that the number of observers expelled Read more about Morocco continues arbitrary expulsions of international observers[…]
Progress towards a political solution to the conflict in Western Sahara remains deadlocked. For the Saharawi, the day-to-day grim reality of stalemate persists. All continue to be denied the right to self-determination which the UN ceasefire agreement promised them some 26 years ago. Morocco continues its efforts to gain economically from the occupation of the Read more about Briefing 2018: We can break the deadlock[…]
Moroccan attempts to profit from the natural resources of Western Sahara received a major setback in the Court of Justice of the European Union in December 2016. The ruling recognises that Western Sahara has a “separate and distinct status” from Morocco; and therefore that the EU-Morocco trade liberalisation agreement is not applicable to trade involving Read more about Briefing 2017: Natural Resources[…]