Western Sahara Resource Watch has received this photo of the Geo Service I, the offshore supply ship accompanying the vessel BGP Prospector that is carrying out seismic seabed research for French oil giant Total.
Total currently holds a reconnaissance contract with the Moroccan government to explore for oil leads in the so called Anzarane Offshore block. This massive area of no less than 100,926,70 sq.km is located west of Dakhla, in the territory of Western Sahara that has been occupied by Morocco for more than three decades.
WSRW has written to Total and BGP, requesting them to withdraw from their engagement in occupied Western Sahara. Up to now, neither has replied.
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Chinese company BGP affirms to WSRW undertaking seabed research on behalf of French oil firm Total. This article has been updated: Seismic study to end 30 March 2013.
With all multinational oil companies in occupied Western Sahara having abandoned their activities, the Moroccan government is trying to catch interest of new investors for further illegal oil exploration. Russian and Chinese state-owned companies, commissioned by a UK firm, are behind a large exploration programme.