Western Sahara has been unlawfully occupied by Morocco for almost 40 years. Today more than half of the Saharan population lives in refugee camps in Algeria’s desert. Christian Democrat Youth (KrFU) of Norway supports the Sahrawi people’s right to self-determination and independence and demand that Norway recognize the Western Saharan republic.
Morocco has since 1975 repeatedly refused to comply with the peace plans under the auspices of the UN, the African Union, and more than one hundred Security Council resolutions. The Sahrawi people are entitled to a referendum to decide the country’s future, but Morocco refuses to give them that possibility. Western Sahara is Africa’s last colony! The conflict has put 165,000 Saharans to flight. Today they live under extremely difficult humanitarian conditions and are completely dependent on international aid.
The Norwegian government has recently changed its rhetoric with regard to the conflict and no longer wants to call Western Sahara occupied. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs now calls the conflict an “unsettled legal situation”, even though the UN treats the country like a decolonizing project and defines Western Sahara as occupied.
The KrFU’s national board agrees with Jan Egeland, the UN’s special adviser for conflict resolution, who has declared that the conflict in Western Sahara is the conflict in the world which most urgently needs to be resolved.
KrFU therefore demands:
that Norway follow, among others, the African Union and recognize the Sahrawi Arabic Democratic Republic an independent state.
that Norwegian companies involved in the unlawful exploitation of Western Sahara’s natural resources withdraw from the country.
that the government follow up the earlier efforts of, among others, [former prime minister,] Mr. Kjell Magne Bondevik and put pressure on Morocco to give the Sahrawis freedom of speech and freedom to organize.
that Morocco open its borders to Western Sahara so that the international community can gain insight into the human rights situation in the occupied areas.
Since 1975, three quarters of the territory of Western Sahara has been occupied by Morocco. A majority of the population is still living in refugee camps in Algeria. Those who remained in their homeland are subjected to serious harassment from the Moroccan occupiers. For more than 40 years the Sahrawis have been waiting for the fullfilment of their legitimate right to self-determination.
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