Western Sahara: Sahara Weekly News Update

WEEKS 25 - 30 : 17.06. - 31.07.2007



17.06.07, Celebration The Polisario Front commemorates, in Mheiriz in the liberated territories, the 37th anniversary of the popular uprising against Spain in 1974, which was bloodily repressed in the Zemla quarter of El Ayoun. [history Zemla/WSO] <http://www.wsahara.net/zemla.html>

21.07.07 The Polisario Front announced that it would hold its 12th Congress next December. A national committee of 85 members has been appointed to prepare for it . [SPS] [list of members] <http://www.arso.org/listecomprepcongr.htm>

27.07.07 Cap Verde has frozen its recognition of SADR.


At least 46 Saharawi citizens, including many young people, were arrested by the police in different towns of occupied Western Sahara, one at the border with Mauritania, another in Goulimine in southern Morocco.

Six of them were found guilty and imprisoned in the Black Prison in El Ayoun.

Four Saharawi activists were sentenced at the court of first instance and three on appeal in El Ayoun, two others in Tan Tan in southern Morocco also in the court of first instance. In Rabat nine students saw their prison sentence reduced on appeal. [list of politicial prisoners] <http://www.arso.org/intifadalistpris.htm> A police car was set on fire by a Molotov cocktail on 6 July, causing minor injuries to its occupants. This act was attributed by the police to independence activists.

Human rights activist, Yahdih Ettarouzi completed his sentence and left prison on 14 July [see his testimony ] <http://www.arso.org/CODESAtestimonyTarouzzi2007.htm> [also in arabic].

<http://www.lescahiersdusahara.com/cds_T/yahdih-ettarrouzi.html> On 19 July a counselor from the American Embassy in Rabat talked in El Ayoun with Saharawi human rights defenders. [Communiqué] <http://arso.org/CODESA230707.htm>


PHOSPHATE Two ships carrying phosphate from Western Sahara arrived in the port of Napier in New Zealand, the Sea Luck on 18.06.07, and the Tai Hua Hai on 23 July.

Twelve parliamentarians from four countries, the United Kingdom, Norway, Japan and New Zealand sent a letter to the maritime transport company, Gearbulk, in London, to protest against the illegal carriage of phosphate by its ship Bulk Saturn. [ See video] <http://www.vest-sahara.no/index.php?parse_news=single&cat=49&art=564> [Press release, London, Oslo, Wellington, Tokyo, 29. June 2007.

<http://www.vest-sahara.no/index.php?parse_news=single&cat=49&art=543>] [Tradewinds Stamford, UK, 25 June 2007 <http://www.vest-sahara.no/index.php?parse_news=single&cat=49&art=540> - ]

RENEWABLE ENERGIES 10.07.07 The Spanish business Iberdrola signed an agreement with the Moroccan National Office of Electricity (ONE) to study the construction of a wind farm of 100 MW in El Ayoun. Western Sahara Resource Watch wrote to the firm to make it aware of the situation on the ground and to ask it to give up its project. [Carta ] <http://www.saharalibre.es/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=1272> In its reply [spanish] <http://www.arso.org/iberdola-wsrw.doc>on 24.07., the director general of Iberdrola wrote that he would not get involved if the project was not accepted by the population concerned. [Spanish electricity company "Iberdrola Renovables" will not invest in the occupied zone of Western Sahara, UPES/APS, 28/07/2007] <http://www.upes.org/body1_eng.asp?field=sosio_eng&id=438>

OIL 31.07.07 In partnership with the Moroccan National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines, Kosmos Energy will begin prospecting for oil at the start of 2009 in the off-shore block of Boujdour. Kosmos Energy is the only oil company still in place in Western Sahara. [Afrol News] <http://www.afrol.com/articles/25697>


18-19.06.07 Moroccan-Saharawi negotiations - MANHASSET I In accordance with Security Council resolution 1754 of 30 April 2007, the Secretary General has taken steps so that the negotiations take place between Morocco and the Polisario Front "without pre-existing conditions, in good faith, and taking account of developments which have happened in recent months, with a view to arriving at a just, lasting and mutually acceptable solution which will allow for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara".

Negotiations took place in Manhasset, Long Island, on the Greentree Estate, under the auspices of the personal envoy of the UN Secretary General, Peter Van Walsum.

The Saharawi delegation: Mahfoud Ali Beiba, president of the Saharawi National Council (parliament), head of the delegation, M'Hamed Khaddad, coordinator with MINURSO, Brahim Ghali, Polisario Front representative in Spain Boukhari Ahmed, Polisario Front representative at the UN Counselors: Bachir Sgheir, counselor at the presidency and Sidi Mohamed Omar, Polisario Front representative for Great Britain and Ireland.

The Moroccan delegation: Chakib Benmoussa, Minister of the Interior, head of the delegation, Fouad Ali Al Himma, deputy Interior Minister, Taieb Fassi Fihri, deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs Khalihenna Ould Errachid, president of CORCAS (Royal Consultative Council for Saharan Affairs), Mohamed Yassine Mansouri, director general of DGED (General Direction of Information and documentation), Mostafa Sahel, Morocco's permanent representative at the UN, Counselors: Maouelainin Maouelainin Ben Khelihanna, secretary general of CORCAS and Mohamed Salah Tamek, governor of Dakhla.

Algeria and Mauritania took part as neighbouring countries in the opening and closing sessions.

The Algerian delegation Ramtane Lamamra, secretary general of the foreign ministry, Youcef Yousfi, ambassador, permanent representative with the UN, Abdallah Baali, ambassador, counselor to the foreign ministry, and counselors, Abdelhafid Hemmaz and Mohieddine Djeffal.

The Mauritanian delegation Sidi Mohamed Ould Boubacar, former Prime Minister and special envoy of the Mauritanian president, Mohamed Ould Tolba, représentant permanent with the UN and Abderrahmane Ould Hamza, ambassador with the foreign ministry.

The only concrete result of two days of meetings: the negotiations will continue in a month at the same place. For statements of the delegations and the UN, as well as the press review, see: WS Online http://www.wsahara.net/polmornegociations.html or arso http://www.arso.org/UNnegociations180607.htm#f

At the margin: A satire on the negotiations published by the website Western Sahara Online <http://www.wsahara.net/sandflakes.html>http://www.wsahara.net/sandflakes.html was taken up by the Moroccan magazine, Al Ousboue, which earned the director the punishment of a heavy fine for "diffusion of false information"!. [Blog WS] <http://saharaoccidental.blogspot.com/2007/07/short-story-petite-histoire.html>

27.06.07 Secretary General's Report, S/2007/385 <http://www.un.org/Docs/journal/asp/ws.asp?m=s/2007/385> On 27 June, the UN publishes the Secretary General's report S/2007/385 concerning the Moroccan-Saharawi negotiations, in which the former strange recommendations, to say the least.

It asks Morocco to accept the autonomy of Western Sahara instead of integrating it to the Kingdom and to the Polisario Front to accept autonomy instead of independence! The report sparks strong protest, it is withdrawn after several hours and never seen at the UN, republished on 3.07, dated 29.06.07, without Ban Ki-moon's recommendations.

[see the chronology of its strange genesis] <http://www.wsahara.net/polmornegociations.html> [the withdrawn report] <http://www.wsahara.net/07/S_2007_385_en.pdf>

11.07.07 Security Council The Secretary General's personal envoy for Western Sahara, Peter van Walsum, presented to the Security Council a paper on the negotiations between Morocco and the Polisario Front and finds the first month's talks very encouraging.

After this session of the Security Council, the American ambassador, Jackie Wolcott Sanders stated, departing from the habitual formal patter, "Morocco's initiative could provide a realistic framework for the start of the negotiations on a plan which would provide a real autonomy, on condition it is accepted by the local population".

[-->more] <http://saharaoccidental.blogspot.com/2007/07/consel-de-scurit-un-security-council.html>

12.07.07 The Italian parliament accepts a motion asking, among other things, that the Italian government accords diplomatic status to the representation of the Polisario Front. [SPS] <http://www.spsrasd.info/en/infos/2007/07/sps-e130707.htm>

23.07.07, European Union Sixth session of the Council of the EU-MOROCCO Association, Brussels Statement of the European Union, which supports the negotiations and regrets the human rights abuses in occupied Western Sahara.[statement] <http://www.consilium.europa.eu/ueDocs/cms_Data/docs/pressData/en/er/95454.pdf>

30.07.07, Enthronement Speech of M6 In his speech, delivered in Tangiers, the King of Morocco affirms that he is disposed to negotiate "but only on autonomy, completely on autonomy and nothing but autonomy". [text and reactions] <http://saharaoccidental.blogspot.com/2007/07/moroccan-stubborness.html> In reply, the Saharawi President, Mohamed Abdelaziz, declared that the Moroccan Government "threatens to annihilate the worthy efforts made by the UN Secretary General, his personal envoy and by the good will of many throughout the world". [SPS] <http://www.spsrasd.info/en/infos/2007/07/sps-e300707-2.htm>


15.06.07, armaments Technical discussions on the sale to Morocco of 15 Rafale aeroplanes with Dassault Aviation have finished. They will be followed by negotiations between the Moroccan and French governments on the financing of the deal. [AFX News Limited 2007, 15-June-2007] <http://www.finanznachrichten.de/nachrichten-2007-06/artikel-8430266.asp>

26.06.07, SAGEM rockets Morocco will receive in two months the first contingent of new type Sagem, AASM rockets. This guided missile system will enter into service on the Dassault Rafale among others. [Bayane al Youm]

04.07.07 Meeting in Paris of Israeli and Moroccan ministers of Foreign Affairs.


09.07.07 The USA donated a million dollars to the WFP for the Saharawi refugees in Algeria.[WFP , 09.07.07].



17.07.07 Aminetou Haidar was honoured by Solidar. The 2007 Silver Rose Award was awarded to her, which will be bestowed in October.[--> more] http://dgroups.org/groups/SOLIDAR-WR/docs/SR_winners_descriptions_Annex.pdf?ois=no


JORNADA JURÍDICA INTERNACIONAL SOBRE EL SAHARA OCCIDENTAL - JOURNEE JURIDIQUE ONTERNATIONALE - International Law Conference on Western Sahara Asociación Internacional de Juristas por el Sáhara Occidental - Association International des Juristes pour le Sahara Occidental (IAJUWS) - International Association of Jurists for Western Sahara (IAJWS) Madrid: 21 de Septiembre de 2007 Info- contact: iajuws[at]lobocom.es

ARTIFARITI 2007: 10 al 27 de Octubre de 2007 http://artifariti.blogspot.com/

EUCOCO 2007 ROMA 19-21.10.07 33ème Conférence européenne de solidarité avec le Peuple Sahraoui 33th European Conference of Support To the Saharawi People 33a Conferencia Europea de apoyo al Pueblo Saharaui http://www.arso.org/eucoco2007/


Nouveau-New-Nuevo web: - Association des Ingénieurs Sahraouis pour le développement (AISD) - Asociacion de Ingenieros Saharauis para el Desarrollo (AISD) - Association of Saharawi Engineers for Development (ASED) http://www.Sahara-ing.org - Be Their Voice, english: http://www.betheirvoice.org/ - Asociacion de Baleares: http://saharaillesbalears.org

Blog: - Layuad el Alma de Tiris, espanol: http://saharamarathon-layuad.blogspot.com - Forum RASD, arabic: http://rasd.smfhost.com/

Not to miss the cartoons of WSO: http://www.wsahara.net/cartoons.html


- Entretien avec la radio SBS australienne en langue francaise http://www20.sbs.com.au/podcasting/media/audio/french_2007-06-21_8524.mp3 - Mixing Occupation and Oil in Western Sahara, by Jacob Mundy, Special to CorpWatch, July 21st, 2005.

http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=12506 - The Western Sahara: disloyalty, negligence...

or responsibility, Alberto Carnero, Director, International Section, FAES, David Sarias, Historian, PAPERS 46, 22.05.07.

http://documentos.fundacionfaes.info/document_file/filename/975/00336-00_-_papeles_46_ingles_sahara.pdf - The Legal Status of Western Sahara and the Laws of War and Occupation, Por Jacob Mundy, Colaboraciones no 1788, 26 de Junio de 2007.

http://www.gees.org/articulo/4185/3 - Performing the nation, pre-figuring the state: the Western Saharan refugees, thirty years later, by Jacob A. Mundy, The Journal of Modern African Studies (2007), 45: 275-297.

- More harm than good, By Stephen Zunes, open democracy, 2007-07-18.

http://www.opendemocracy.net/madrid11/western_sahara_180707 - Es peor el remedio que la enfermidad, Stephen Zunes [traduccion: M.Limam Mohamed Ali] http://arso.org/Zunes180707s.htm - The Future of Western Sahara, Stephen Zunes, Foreign Policy In Focus, Washington D.C., July 20, 2007. http://fpif.org/fpiftxt/4410 - El futuro del Sahara Occidental , Stephen Zunes [Traducción: M.Limam Mohamed Ali] http://arso.org/Zunes200707s.htm - Spain as Administering Power of Western Sahara, Eduardo Trillo de Martín-Pinillos. Ph.D., Associate Professor of International Law, UNED, Spain (on UPES web).

http://www.upes.org/body2_eng.asp?field=articulos_eng&id=277 - Nationalism, Identity and Citizenship in Western Sahara, Pablo San Martin, The Journal of North African Studies , Volume 10, Issue 3 & 4 September 2005 , pages 565 - 592. (on UPES web) http://www.upes.org/body2_eng.asp?field=articulos_eng&id=278 - El papel de las Fuerzas Armadas Marroquíes en la vida política del Reino, Federico Aznar Fernández-Montesinos, Ediciones E-Theoria - Universidad Complutense, Madrid, 2007.


OPINIONS: http://opinions.arso.org/

NEW PUBLICATIONS [External links to newspapers may not be valid after some days because the servers are restarted]

Français >> Revue de la presse internationale francophone >>http://fr.groups.yahoo.com/group/revue-de-presse-sahara-occidental/messages - Nouvelles sahraouies No 124, bulletin du comité suisse de soutien au peuple sahraoui, juin 2007.[PDF] http://nouvellessahraouies.arso.org/0607NS.pdf - Sahara occidental: associations et juristes français se concertent pour alerter sur les atteintes aux droits de l'homme, SPS, 16.06.07.

http://www.spsrasd.info/fr/infos/2007/06/sps-160607-3.html - Ce que la cause des Sahraouis a perdu en Algérie, par Kamel Daoud, Le Quotidien d'Oran, 16.06.07.

http://www.lequotidien-oran.com/?news=501745 - Réexamen de la question du Sahara occidental, Echec du coup de force à l'ONU, Les Débats, Zhor Chérief, 11.07.07.

http://www.lesdebats.com/editionsdebats/110707/monde.htm#1 - Les négociations Maroc-Polisario selon le professeur Yahia Zoubir, "Rabat donne de faux espoirs aux Sahraouis", ibid.

http://www.lesdebats.com/editionsdebats/110707/monde.htm#2 - Un mauvais voisin, Nabil Benali, Les Débats, 11.07.07.

http://www.lesdebats.com/editionsdebats/110707/edito.htm - Propagande à la marocaine, terrorisme et cocktail Molotov, R. N., Le quotidien d'Oran, Jul 16,2007 http://www.lequotidien-oran.com/index.php?news=502973

English >> English publications on Sahara Update >>mailinglist: >>http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Sahara-update/messages - Western Sahara's future in the balance, ISA Consulting, June 27th 2007.

http://www.isn.ethz.ch/news/sw/details.cfm?ID=17798 - Phosphate workers not permitted to demonstrate.

http://www.vest-sahara.no/index.php?parse_news=single&cat=49&art=530 - The 2007 Moroccan Autonomy Plan for Western Sahara: Too many Black Holes, By Carlos Ruiz Miguel, GEES, Analysis nº 196 | June 29, 2007.

http://www.eng.gees.org/articulo/214/ - Western Sahara and the Struggle for Independence, Uprising radio, 10 Jul 2007.

http://uprisingradio.org/home/?p=1678 Listen: http://ia300020.us.archive.org/3/items/DailyDigest071007/2007_07_10_mundy.mp3

Castellano >> Revista de la prensa en espa-ol >>http://es.groups.yahoo.com/group/revista-de-prensa-sahara-occidental/messages - Sahara Occidentale en Espacios europeos: http://www.espacioseuropeos.com/saharaoc.aspx - "Um Draiga", una antología de poesía contemporánea saharaui en espa-ol Diez escritores de la llamada Generación de la Amistad han aportado sus versos al libro, Heraldo de Aragón, 23.06.07.

http://www.heraldo.es/heraldo.html?noticia=202178 - INFO PROGRAMA SAHARA: CONSTRUIR RESISTENCIA, Arquitectos Sin Fronteras, Junio 2007 - número 29.

http://asfes.org/descargas/info/INFO-29-Julio-2007.pdf - Shukran, Julio 2007. http://www.shukran.es/nueva/

Italiano Attualità in italiano: El Ouali Bologna: http://www.saharawi.org/saharawi.htm + Radio for Peace http://www.radiokcentrale.it/du.htm - Jean Lamore, La costruzione dell'oblio, l'Occidente e il Sahara Occidental, Napoli, 2007.

- Vedere l'occupazione, 64 fotografie dal Sahara Occidentale, Napoli, 2007.

- Mozione 1/00159 presentata da Carlo Leoni giovedì 10 maggio 2007 nella seduta n.155 http://banchedati.camera.it/sindacatoispettivo_15/showXhtml.asp?highLight=0&idAtto=11734&stile=6 - Resoconti dell'Assemblea, Seduta n. 188 di giovedì 12 luglio 2007.

http://www.camera.it/resoconti/resoconto_seduta.asp?idSeduta=188 - Dal Parlamento italiano un aiuto alla causa del popolo saharawi, Rainews 24, 13.07.07.

http://www.rainews24.it/notizia.asp?newsID=71849 - Con i saharawi per la pace nel Mediterraneo, Carlo Leoni, 13 luglio 2007.


Deutsch - Sahara Info Nr. 103, Juni 2007, SUKS, Bern.

- Hoffnung für die Westsahara, In New York, unter Ägide der Uno, beginnen die Westsahara-Gespräche, Oliver Meiler, Tagesanzeiger, Zürich, 17.06.07.

http://tages-anzeiger.ch/dyn/news/ausland/762814.html - "Autonomie" bedeutet NICHT die Ausübung des Selbstbestimmungsrechts, von Axel Goldau, inamo 50 [Sommer 2007]: 49 - 51. Berlin.

http://arso.org/INAMO_WS_final.pdf - Alltägliche Gewalt statt Selbstbestimmung in der Westsahara, AP, 3. Juli 2007.

http://de.news.yahoo.com/ap/20070703/twl-alltgliche-gewalt-statt-selbstbestim-1be00ca.html - Silver Rose Award 2007 an Aminetu Haidar - Internationale Auszeichnung für saharauische Menschenrechtsaktivistin, SPÖ-Delegation im Europäischen Parlament, 18/07/2007.


Norsk Press - Nyheterna: http://www.vest-sahara.no/

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