Time to Resolve the ‘Sandbox War’

Since Morocco seized its phosphate-rich southern neighbour, the former Spanish colony of Western Sahara, in 1975, Sahrawi activists have resisted Moroccan rule. Sixteen years of armed conflict formally ended in 1991 with a United Nations-backed agreement for a referendum on the territory's future, but a ballot has been continually delayed over disputes about the voting process. With global food security depending on the supply of phosphates for fertilizer - amid growing international concerns about human rights - pressures to resolve the long-standing conflict are increasing.

Photo: AllAfrica

Independence fighters in Western Sahara, 1977

Photo: AllAfrica

Saharan refugee camp between Tindouf, Algeria and the border with Western Sahara.

InFocus

See What Everyone is Watching

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.