Trump backs occupation, opens consulate in Western Sahara

US president Donald Trump issued a statement today in which he backs Morocco's occupation of Western Sahara and the opening of a consulate in Dakhla, "to promote economic and business opportunities".

Published 10 December 20

Outgoing US President Donald Trump on 10 December, on Human Rights Day, recognised Morocco's untenable claim to occupied Western Sahara, in return for Morocco normalising relations with Israel. Find the proclamation here.

The statement also stipulates that "the United States will encourage economic and social development with Morocco, including in the Western Sahara territory, and to that end will open a consulate in the Western Sahara territory, in Dakhla, to promote economic and business opportunities for the region."

The town of Dakhla is the location where a US bitoin mining company will establish a large energy project next year. Some agriculture products are allegedly also exported from the unsustainable greenhouses in the desert near Dakhla to North America.

"It is not for Donald Trump to decide the status of Western Sahara. International law has determined that this is the prerogative of the people of Western Sahara", says Sylvia Valentin, Chair of WSRW. "US recognition of Morocco's illegal occupation of Western Sahara does not make the occupation legal."

In response to the US move, the spokesperson of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres noted in a press briefing today that "Our stand on Western Sahara is unchanged".

The move marks a departure from longstanding US policy, which did not formally recognise Morocco's claim to the territory.

The US Trade Representative stated for instance in 2004 that the US-Morocco Free Trade Agreement does not include Western Sahara, since "The United States [...] do not recognize Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara

Siemens, Enel blacklisted by asset manager over international law concerns

Siemens Gamesa, Siemens Energy and Enel Spa have been excluded by Norway's largest private asset manager for contributing to violations of international law in occupied Western Sahara. 

14 January 21

WSRW has a new website

WSRW is pleased to announce that we finally have a new website! Please be patient with us in the transition. Full functionality will be expected from end of January 2021. Errors can be reported to info@wsrw.org. 

16 December 20

How the companies argue

This article is under construction. Please come back later. 

01 December 19

SRI update

The following overview enlists stock-exchange registered companies currently operating in Western Sahara. Updated 5 October 2020.

12 December 20