More Norwegian equipment on rig in occupied Western Sahara
Article image
The oil rig that this autumn will destroy the future of the Sahrawi population is not just equipped with components made by Norwegian company Aker Solutions. The rig is filled to the brim with equipment from National Oilwell Varco’s Norwegian plants – at a threefold greater value.
Published 12 May 2014

In March the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) revealed that Aker Solutions had delivered extremely vital parts to the rig Atwood Achiever, which is to be used in occupied Western Sahara. New revelations from Norwegian newspaper Fædrelandsvennen 9 April 2014 revealed that it is filled to the brim with equipment from the American Kristiansand-based firm National Oilwell Varco (NOV).

“Fædrelandsvennen has examined all of the equipment specifications for the ship. Aker Solutions is mentioned once, whereas NOV is listed 26 times. NOV has supplied almost the whole boring package at a cost of almost 1 billion Norwegian kroner (122 mill Euros). Aker has supplied parts of the riser system at a cost of 300 million Norwegian kroner. The cranes on deck are also from NOV,” Fædrelandsvennen reported.

NOV informs Fædrelandsvennen that they were not informed about the destination of the equipment. They also state that they now know only because it was taken up by the Norwegian media.

NOV states that the ship will not be served by its Norwegian branch.

“We follow Norwegian guidelines. This boring ship is an American customer and will be served from the USA,” Mr. Tor Henning Ramsfjord, Managing Director of NOV, told the newspaper.

They emphasize that they follow the recommendations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“Like everyone else, we sympathize with the people there. But the equipment is no longer our property. We therefore have no possibility of determining where it is to be used,” Ramsfjord explained to Fædrelandsvennen.

NOV has production plants at several locations in Norway.

The Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara opposes the involvement.

UN human rights expert decries “clampdown” on human rights defenders

Morocco must stop targeting human rights defenders and journalists standing up for human rights in Western Sahara, and allow them to work without reprisals, UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, said today.

01 July 2021

Sultana's home raided by police, activists arrested

In an early morning raid today, masked agents terrorized and assaulted the home of the Saharawi human rights defender Sultana Khaya, stole belongings and took three activists to an undisclosed location.

10 May 2021

UN experts urge Morocco to release imprisoned Sahrawi journalist

On 7 June 2019, videos began to circulate showing Moroccan police brutally beating up a Saharawi journalist in occupied Western Sahara. Today, a UN opinion calling for his release from prison was made public. 

07 February 2021

Sultana has spent two months in house arrest

The Saharawi activist Sultana Khaya and her family has for almost 10 weeks been harrassed by Moroccan police when leaving or entering their home in occupied Western Sahara. Help us to denounce. 

26 January 2021