News

More than a hundred persons are said to have been injured in Western Sahara's capital, observing the UN Human Rights day and frustrated over EU's new illegal fisheries agreement with Morocco in their waters. Videos keep coming in. See series.

Published 12 December 2013

The EU parliament today decided to continue the illegal EU fisheries practices in occupied Western Sahara. 2 hours later, Saharawis took to the streets. Several injured. 

Published 10 December 2013
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Sahrawi human rights activist Elghalia Djimi and former Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Western Sahara Francesco Bastagli were among the guests at oil seminars in Oslo and Stavanger last week.
Published 21 November 2013
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EU is about to enter into a new fishing agreement with Morocco, which is contrary to international law because Western Sahara is not excluded. The Norwegian Union of Social Educators and Social Workers (FO) students' congress this weekend requested Norwegian politicians to talk some sense into the EU parliamentarians.
Published 20 November 2013
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Ali Salem Tamek, a well known Saharawi human rights defender, was about to leave for Europe to undergo surgery, when the Moroccan police came to arrest his wife on false charges.
Published 14 November 2013
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The journalist Fredrik Laurin (left) came to Norway last week to talk about his new book about the resource theft in Western Sahara. - When people hear where the fish or tomatoes are from, they don't want it! he says.
Published 06 November 2013
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The Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara is 20 years old this week.
Published 06 November 2013
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Salma and Jadietu are touring Norway to talk about the situation in Western Sahara.
Published 06 November 2013

A number of videos from the occupied territories have during the last few days been published Youtube.

Published 20 October 2013
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On October 14th The Icelandic Association for Western Sahara was formally founded.
Published 17 October 2013
The company Total is carrying out oil exploration in the Sahara and was this year present on “Career Day” at Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim. Changemaker, SAIH and The Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara are now criticizing NTNU for lack of ethical guidelines.
Published 01 October 2013

Salah 'The Runner' Amaidane came in at second place at Oslo Marathon, 10K, 21 Sept 2013. 

 

Published 22 September 2013
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A new master thesis written by Yuka Heka at the University of Tromsø, Norway explores the relationship between national identity and political opinions of Saharawis.
Published 19 September 2013
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A new report documents the discovery of eight executed Sahrawis in Western Sahara. The executions have not previously been known and shed light on Morocco’s secrecy with regard to previous disappearances.
Published 19 September 2013

A new documentary - The Runner - shows the motivation, struggle and history of the Saharawi who is running internationally, inspiring his people. 

Published 18 September 2013
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Western Sahara Resource Watch today launched a report on the French oil company Total’s irresponsible comeback in occupied Western Sahara. The company carries out exploration in the territory despite the UN legal office stating it would be in violation of international law.
Published 04 September 2013
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Western Sahara Resource Watch has today launched a report detailing how Morocco intends to build over 1000 MW (megawatts) of renewable energy plants in Western Sahara, a territory that Morocco partially occupies.
Published 04 September 2013
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Our international platform Western Sahara Resource Watch is now on Facebook. Like us!
Published 29 August 2013
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Five hopeful Sahrawi youth from the refugee camps were selected on Wednesday 14th of August for a two year International high school education at one of 13 United World Colleges (UWC) around the World.
Published 23 August 2013
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The Norwegian investor KLP announced 3 June that they have blacklisted the oil company Total from its portfolio due to the company’s oil activities offshore Western Sahara. The Norwegian Government’s Pension Fund might land on the same conclusion.
Published 05 June 2013
The Norwegian pension scheme KLP is excluding the French oil company Total from its investments. KLP considers Total’s activities in Western Sahara unethical.
Published 04 June 2013
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In the Norwegian newspaper Strilen today, the shipping company Fonnes Shipping denies they do something wrong when they take part in the plunder of Western Sahara. They blame their Dutch partner for the deal.
Published 30 May 2013
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A group of three Norwegians that travelled to occupied Western Sahara yesterday, is at this moment being expelled from Western Sahara.
Published 09 May 2013
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More photos of injured demonstrators from occupied Western Sahara.
Published 29 April 2013
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The Western Sahara liberation movement, Frente Polisario, publishes its position on human rights monitoring.
Published 08 April 2013
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Sultana Khaya, who visited Norway last year, has once again been assaulted by the police during a demonstration. Amnesty expressed concern about the assaults on peaceful demonstrators.
Published 07 April 2013
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Norwegian owned shipping company admits carrying out shipments from Western Sahara. In two recent articles in a Norwegian newspaper, the company received heavy criticism. “When Norwegian government urges companies to stay away from Western Sahara, one should try to follow those advice”, said competitor.
Published 29 March 2013
UN is attempting once again to kick life into the negotiations on the much-debated desert region. For four decades the inhabitants have been waiting in vain to decide the future of their occupied homeland. Aftenposten, 4 Feb 2012.
Published 12 February 2013
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The EU is planning to enter a new unethical fisheries agreement with Morocco in 2013. Once more, the EU intends to fish in the waters offshore occupied Western Sahara, in violation of international law. Protest by signing this petition!
Published 11 December 2012
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A group of four Norwegian youth politicians were expelled from Western Sahara yesterday. Their goal was to meet with Saharawi human rights activists to learn more about the conflict, and the excessive human rights violations.
Published 07 November 2012
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Norway's biggest film festival picked yesterday the film 'Sons of the Clouds' as the best film.
Published 23 October 2012
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When Manu Chao entered the stage at City Hall Square on Saturday, he had a message about the world’s injustice. As always. is_is_published in Dagsavisen, 27 August 2012.
Published 29 August 2012
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The French Spanish musician Manu Chao played at a music festival in Oslo on 25 August - with the Western Sahara flag on stage.
Published 26 August 2012
Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs was in April 2012 asked about the Norwegian government's position regarding expansion of the mandate of the UN operation in Western Sahara, to also include human rights monitoring.
Published 13 August 2012
Christian Democratic Party asks Norwegian Minister for Agriculture about Norway's work to recycle phosphates.
Published 13 August 2012
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Norwegian company DNV, certified by the UN Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) to evaluate projects seeking CDM-funding, has issued a negative opinion on the Moroccan King’s envisioned windfarm project in occupied Western Sahara – precisely for taking place in a politically controversial area.

Published 26 July 2012
The Norwegian representatives in Geneva today underlined the need for Morocco respecting that Saharawi organisations are allowed to formally register.
Published 22 May 2012
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Human rights activits Sultana Khaya thanked the Green Party of Norway for the support for the Saharawi cause at the annual meeting in Bergen, Norway, 15 April.
Published 16 April 2012
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The eight political youth parties of region of Hordaland, Norway, together organised a full day conference on Western Sahara at the University of Bergen.
Published 16 April 2012
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France objects to human rights in Western Sahara. Some twenty people demonstrated for respect of human rights in front of France's embassy in Oslo today.
Published 14 April 2012
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FMC Corporation states that they have stopped importing phosphates from Western Sahara to Spain and that they should never have been kicked out of the Norwegian government's pension fund for lack of ethics.
Published 23 December 2011
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The Norwegian fertilizer firm Yara states their position remains unchanged, and that they do not purchase phosphates from Western Sahara. Yara's new agreement with Moroccan phosphate firm specifically excludes purchases from Western Sahara, according to the company.
Published 19 December 2011
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Covington & Burling, the US lobby law firm that lobbies for the Moroccan phosphate trade from occupied territory of Western Sahara travelled all the way to Oslo to explain to an investor how the Saharawis supposedly benefit from the trade. Still, the firm refuse to talk to Saharawis or civil society about the industry.
Published 08 December 2011
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Asria Mohamed Taleb, journalist from Western Sahara currently living in Norway, today launched a book on the conflict. Download the book here.
Published 01 December 2011

Demonstrators kicked out of the protest camp in, have been demonstrating in the city of El Aaiun. Demonstrators put fire on several houses. Videos added to this article as we get them. 
 

Published 08 November 2011
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At a conference in Bergen 27 October, former UN Special Representative to Western Sahara aired his disappointment over the international community’s inability to solve the last colonial issue in Africa.
Published 06 November 2011
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Former Rafto laureate criticised lack of openness in Moroccan courts at a seminar in Center for Middle Eastern Studies in Bergen, Norway. He was himself denied access to a court last month.
Published 02 November 2011
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Sigrun Henjum defended today her PhD thesis on the iodine levels in the Saharawi refugee camps in Algeria.
Published 21 October 2011
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Big names arriving Bergen: A former UN top official, a former Rafto Award Laureate, important academics. Come to Western Sahara conference 27 October! Conference language: English.
Published 20 October 2011
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A Norwegian humanitarian organisation and a university college has cooperated on researching the nutrition levels of the Saharawi refugees. The cooperation has led to a series of publications. See the studies here.
Published 13 October 2011
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Associate Professor, Hans Morten Haugen, on a conference on Corporate Social Responsability in Norway, elaborated on how Norwegian importing firms relate to the advice of the Norwegian government to abstain from Western Sahara trade, and how they omit the proper due dilligence on human rights.
Published 10 October 2011
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"I have no problem in stating, in retrospect, that it might have been a bad idea to take this assignment”, CEO of seismic services firm Spectrum ASA told media today. Now, Irish oil minor San Leon has to find another subcontractor to process the geological data they collect from the occupied territory in violation of international law.
Published 08 October 2011

Morocco is continuing its oil programme on the Boujdour onshore block. These cars were filmed as they did geological surveys in the occupied territories.

Published 31 July 2011
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Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs underlines that the wishes of the Sahrawis must be taken into account upon undertaking business in the territory of Western Sahara.
Published 30 June 2011
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“We urge businesses to stay away from the territory since we do not recognise the annexation of Western Sahara" stated Norway's Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Friday. An opening to invest in the "illegitimately annexed" territory is given under the condition it benefits the local population - “and with the local population we of course refer to the Sahrawi people”, said the Deputy Minister.
Published 22 June 2011
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See Youtube video of the stone throwing Moroccan police in El Aaiun. The images shows the police attacking Sahrawi activists who demand autopsy of a Sahrawi killed by a policeman earlier this year.
Published 29 May 2011
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The Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara stands in solidarity with the people of West Papua and their struggle for self determination. West Papua, the western half of the island of New Guinea, is a former Dutch colony occupied by Indonesia. It borders the independent state of Papua New Guinea.
Published 31 March 2011
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The Norwegian Support Committee of Western Sahara supports the struggle for democracy across the Arab world. Dictators and security forces have for too long dominated the region and suppressed the peoples’ call for freedom.
Published 31 March 2011
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"Morocco does not have the right to exploit the area’s resources as if they were its own", states Norwegian Minister for Foreign Affairs, underlining that fisheries in Western Sahara "must be exercised in accordance with the wishes and interests of the population involved".
Published 07 March 2011
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A group of Nordic students were last night ordered to leave occupied Western Sahara by Moroccan police.
Published 30 January 2011
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Two Norwegian tourists were detained in Western Sahara today. The two men were taken by the police few minutes after meeting the mother of Sahrawi prisoner of conscience, Brahim Dahane. The formal explanation they were given by the Moroccan police for their detention and expulsion was that "speaking with the local population is not explicitly permitted with a Moroccan tourist visa".
Published 11 January 2011
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The Norwegian fish oil producer GC Rieber clarifies to the Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara that their refinery Maromega in TanTan in South Morocco has stopped all purchases from Western Sahara.
Published 27 December 2010

The Spanish embassy in Oslo does not wish to respond to the question whether the word “wishes” is mentioned in the conclusion of the UN 2002 legal opinion. In order to get an answer of how Spain interprets the UN document, a national Norwegian student organisation was referred to the Saharawi delegation in Madrid.

Published 23 December 2010
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Norwegian company obliged to pay 1,2 million Euro in customs for importing fish oil from occupied Western Sahara. The importer falsely labelled Western Sahara products as Moroccan.
Published 01 December 2010
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"A government that says repeatedly that it has nothing to hide should prove that by allowing all media and nongovernmental organizations to come and to collect information without obstacles", Human Rights Watch states.
Published 27 November 2010
The International Federation of Liberal Youth (IFLRY) adopted during this week-end's general assembly in Beirut a resolution strongly criticizing Morocco's violent occupation of Western Sahara.
Published 24 November 2010
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Some 30 Sahrawis and Norwegians carried out a demonstration in front of the Spanish embassy in Oslo today to protest the Spanish government’s undermining of the Sahrawi people’s rights. Spain is currently pushing the EU to try to renew an illegal fisheries agreement covering the waters offshore the occupied territories.
Published 22 November 2010
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Saharawis and Norwegians demonstrated today against the last days of human rights violations in Western Sahara. The protesters also carried out a demonstration in front of the French cultural centre. "Sarkozy, stop blocking human rights", the Sahrawis asked.
Published 10 November 2010
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Published 08 November 2010
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Moroccan forces intervened brutally against the peaceful protest camp early this morning. Many are injured. Big demonstrations in El Aaiun all day. Some Saharawis are killed, not known how many. First image of killed Saharawi (above) circulated this afternoon.
Published 08 November 2010
...until the Moroccan army stormed the place.
Published 08 November 2010
For 3 weeks, they had been peacefully demonstrating in the desert. Today, Moroccan forces intervened, stopping the protest camp. Article being edited.

Published 08 November 2010
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Statement from the Liberal Party of Norway, 8 November 2010.
Published 08 November 2010
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The Norwegian Support Committee for Western Sahara, Centre for Peace Studies and SAIH-Tromsø hosts the conference “35 years without rights” on Western Sahara in Tromsø on 6 November. The day before the 35 year anniversary of the Moroccan invasion and occupation of Western Sahara.
Published 28 October 2010
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A 14-year old boy was shot and killed by Moroccan police last Sunday.
Published 26 October 2010
Saharawis wanting to join the new protest camp inside the occupied territories are chased away by stone throwing Moroccan army. Check out 02:21.
Published 23 October 2010
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When Fugro Norway was to promote itself on the Business days at the University of Oslo on 28 September, they were welcomed with cake. In 2009, Fugro was refused to attend the same event due to their engagement in occupied Western Sahara. Since then, the firm has withdrawn from the occupied territory.
Published 02 October 2010
The film ‘Stolen’, which falsely portrays a Saharawi refugee woman as a slave, has been rejected by Bergen International Film Festival. The festival chose to take it off the programme, out of concern to the main character of the movie.
Published 30 August 2010
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A court in Oslo decided Friday to not prohibit the screening of a film at the Norwegian Short Film Festival tomorrow, despite the evidence that the film is a scam. All of the film’s allegations presenting the main character Fetim as a slave have been fabricated. The main character feels deeply offended of the film being shown.
Published 19 June 2010
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If the film makers behind this movie ever approach you for an interview, it would be wise to decline. Stolen - a movie that will be screened at a Norwegian film festival on Thursday - is full of fabricated subtitles. A normal Saharawi woman is portrayed as a slave despite no coverage for this claim in the movie.
Published 19 June 2010
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In a few hours, a refugee from Western Sahara will be victim of an offence of her dignity at the Norwegian Short Film Festival. At 2 PM today, a film will be screened, in which she is portrayed to be a slave – something which she not is. Press release, 17 June 2010.
Published 17 June 2010
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If the film makers behind this movie ever approach you for an interview, it would be wise to decline. Stolen - a movie that will be screened at a Norwegian film festival on Thursday - is full of fabricated subtitles. A normal Saharawi woman is portrayed as a slave despite no coverage for this claim in the movie.
 

Published 16 June 2010
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Norwegian investor KLP has blacklisted another two new fertiliser companies that buy phosphate from occupied Western Sahara. Furthermore, two additional corporations were dropped from its portfolio because they are linked with nuclear weapons production. Norwatch, 1 June 2010.
Published 08 June 2010
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"Since Morocco does not exercise internationally recognised sovereignty over Western Sahara, Western Sahara is not seen as a part of Morocco’s territory in relation to this agreement. The Free Trade Agreement is thus not applicable to goods from Western Sahara", stated Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Jonas Gahr Store, 11 May 2010.
Published 12 May 2010
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Dutch seismic services firm Fugro NV, and its Norwegian subsidiary Fugro-Geoteam, state they do not want to undertake any more assignments in Western Sahara under the current political situation in the country.
Published 12 May 2010
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The Moroccan-EFTA free trade agreement does not cover Western Sahara, according to Norwegian and Swiss authorities. This will have multi-million euro consequences for a firm that systematically mislabeled Western Sahara imports as Moroccan, and illustrates how the European Commission is on collision course with rest of the international community.

Published 12 May 2010
Kongsberg Seatex had hoped to sell an ocean surveillance system to the Moroccan navy but chose to refrain because of the Western Sahara conflict. “We could not be absolutely sure that it would not be placed in Western Sahara,” Even Aas, Executive Vice President, Public Affairs, told Norwatch.
Published 12 May 2010
Paul-Christian Rieber, president of the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO), has for years traded with a country that Norwegian authorities have asked the business community to avoid. That may have been the main reason he resigned yesterday. Aftenposten, 24 April 2010.
Published 12 May 2010
The company of the most important person in Norwegian business life, the President of the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise, is under investigation by Norwegian authorities. The reason is a failure to pay import tens of millions of euros on duties upon importing fish oil from occupied Western Sahara.
Published 12 May 2010
Norwegian fish oil importer GC Rieber today announced that they have stopped all imports of fish oil from Morocco and occupied Western Sahara. After their biggest customer did not longer want to buy the controversial oil, the importer has chosen to stop further purchases from the region. Norwatch, 14 April 2010.
Published 14 April 2010
A Norwegian government owned company stops purchases from Morocco and Western Sahara, over ethical concern. The value of the purchases has amounted to around 10 million euros annually.
Published 11 April 2010
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The violations of human rights committed by the Moroccan authorities on the Sahrawis in the occupied territories continues. Polisario now urges the UN to start monitoring all the violations. They even welcome UN monitoring of the refugee camps they themselves administer.
Published 07 April 2010
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After revelations on Swedish and Norwegian TV, Cognis terminates all purchases of fish oil from Western Sahara and Morocco.
Published 02 April 2010
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An unknown number of Saharawis were injured when Moroccan police cracked down on a peaceful demonstration for self determination in occupied Western Sahara Monday night. Strong images.
Published 11 March 2010
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University of East Anglia, UK, looks for volunteers for a project in Western Sahara.
Published 08 March 2010


Clear message from Sahrawi human rights defender Elkouria Amidane to the new EU Fisheries Commissioner, Maria Damanaki, on Swedish national TV today.
Published 06 March 2010