Today, 12 January 2016, a group of unemployed Saharawi graduates have started a hunger strike to demand respect for their right to work. The group is staying at the local headquarters of the Moroccan Association for Human Rights (AMDH) in El Aaiun - the capital city of occupied Western Sahara.
To the Saharawi youth, who grew up as second class citizens under a brutal occupation, this was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back. Since mid-December, they've been protesting practically every day. The Moroccan police responds to the demonstrations in their usual way; with disproportionate use of police violence.
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
It's not easy keeping up with all the different legal proceedings relating to Western Sahara. For the sake of clarity, here's an overview of the three different cases at the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Leading activists from Western Sahara are condemned to sentences ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment in connection to a mass protest in 2010 denouncing the Saharawi people’s social and economic marginalization in their occupied land; the Gdeim Izik protest camp.
At COP22, beware of what you read about Morocco’s renewable energy efforts. An increasing part of the projects take place in the occupied territory of Western Sahara and is used for mineral plunder, new WSRW report documents.