WESTERN SAHARA - NEWS

WEEKS 23 - 24 : 03.06. - 16.06.2007

original french

OCCUPIED TERRITORIES AND SOUTH MOROCCO

24.05.07, Written question to the Council of the European Union
Subject: Repression carried out by the Kingdom of Morocco against Saharawi students, put by Pasqualina Napoletano (PSE), Carlos Carnero González (PSE), Iratxe García Pérez (PSE), Ignasi Guardans Cambó (ALDE), Willy Meyer Pleite (GUE/NGL), Raül Romeva i Rueda (Verts/ALE) and Karin Scheele (PSE).

01.06.07 El Ayoun
Arrest of five young Saharawis, some minors, subjected to torture and sexual abuses, detained beyond the custody period. [Communiqué CODESA, french, 10.06.07] [ASVDH engl.]

04. - 10.06.07, Rabat
The students arrested during a sit-in at the University on 17.05.07, incarcerated in Rabat-Salé prison, publish an open letter on 04. , they announce in a statement that they will start a hunger strike on 10.06.07 .
See also the detailed report on the bloody intervention against Saharawi students within the student residence, Cité Al IRFAN-Rabat. <http://www.arso.org/>
Some videos of student demonstrations: http://goufia.blogspot.com/

12.06.07, Trial Rabat
Nine Saharawi students are sentenced to 8 months’ prison and a fine of 500 dirhams. ASVDH: http://asvdh.net/english/?p=216

13.06.07, El Ayoun
Demonstrations in Skaikima district. Arrest of four persons. ASVDH: http://asvdh.net/english/?p=217

14.06.07, El-Ayoun
Demonstrations in Maatallah and Inaach districts. Eleven questioned, four homes ransacked. Comunicado CODESA, spanish: http://www.arso.org/CODESA140607.htm

NATURAL RESOURCES

30.05.07 The Royal Consultative Council for Saharan Affairs (CORCAS) approved, at the end of the proceedings of the first ordinary session for the year 2007, the creation of 1,000 small scale fishing businesses in the “provinces of the South of the Kingdom” offering over 4,000 jobs in the maritime fishing sector. [MHI, No 747]

Kosmos Energy, the only company still on the ground, publishes a report on the potential that the region appears to offer. Read more :
Fortune hunters eye Western Sahara oil riches, Kosmos Energy report on the Boujdour offshore field, Kosmos Energy report on the Boujdour offshore field: «A high risk and a very high reward», afrol News, 9 June 2007.

REFERENDUM

03.06.07,  Meeting in an ordinary session, the National Secretariat of the Polisario Front reaffirms its willingness to start direct negotiations with Morocco.
[Full text: SPS, french 04.06.07]

03.06.07
The official visit of the President of Brazil, Lula da Silva to Morocco, was cancelled at the last moment by Rabat, because of differences of opinion on the question of Western Sahara, according to the daily, Correio Braziliense. [Liberté, 03.06.07].

04.06.07, diplomatic ballet
After the meetings of Sarkozy and Rice with Zapatero in Madrid between 31.05 and 01.06.07, the Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs goes to Paris.
[Déclaration du porte-parole du ministère français des Affaires étrangères et européennes]

Moroccan-Saharawi Direct Negotiations
04.06.07, The UN announces that direct negotiations will be held on 18 and 19 June near New York.
FR Conférence de presse du président du conseil de sécurité pour le mois de juin et représentant permanent de la Belgique: 4 juin 2007.
Western Sahara talks to be held on 18-19 june (UN official). Daily briefing by Marie Okabe Deputy Spokesperson for Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, UN headquarters, New York, June 4, 2007: http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=22779&Cr=western&Cr1=sahara

05.06.07
The Algerian President, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, declares that the problem of Western Sahara represents a factor blocking the building of the Maghreb, which influences the future of the whole region. Algiers recognizes for the first time that the conflict in Western Sahara is an obstacle to constructing the Maghreb. Algeria puts, for the first time, pressure on its partners in making recognition of the right to self-determination of the Saharawi people a condition of building the Arab Maghreb Union. [MINAE Alger 06.06.07]  [engl. SPS]

05.06.07 Daniel Ortega, on a visit to Algiers, reiterates his support for the Saharawi people, recalling he signed, on 10 January, after his election as head of state in Nicaragua, the recognition of the Saharawi people and the Saharawi state.[AFP, french]

06.06.07, The Committee of the Twenty-Four examine the question of Western Sahara
Boukhari’s statement before the Committee of the 24: http://www.spsrasd.info/en/infos/2007/06/sps-e070607-4.html

06.06.07,  Interview of US Ambassador Ford in Algiers
“It is clear that the Sahara question prevents Maghreb integration”. “There is no other choice but to set the Moroccans and the Polisario face to face, in the same room for negotiations”, the American diplomat indicated. “ This does not mean that it’s up to the Polisario to accept everything and all at once out of the Moroccan proposal, and the same goes for the Moroccans”, he said. “The Moroccan plan is serious and credible. Should the Polisario accept this plan in its entirety? No.”
[Le Quotidien d'Oran, 06.06.07, texte complet:
http://www.lequotidien-oran.com/index.php?news=501162&archive_date=2007-06-06 ] [SPS]

06.06.07, Hearing US Pollicy
US House of Represenrtatives, Hearing of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs: "U.S. Policy Challenges in North Africa"
Statement of Chairman Lantos . Fulltext : http://foreignaffairs.house.gov/110/lantos060607.htm
Remarks by Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Welch, Fulltext: http://foreignaffairs.house.gov/110/wel060607.htm

06.06.07 Visit of the UN Secretary General to Madrid
Ban states that he has invited to attend the negotiations, in addition to Mauritania and Algeria, the countries of the group of “Friends of Western Sahara”, USA, Spain, UK, France and Russia. [Middle East Online]
About fifty people demonstrate outside the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. [Europa Press 06.06.07].

11.06.07, Press conference in Algiers of the Saharawi Minister for Foreign Affairs Ould Salek,
The Polisario Front launches a “solemn and urgent” appeal to the UN to seize the opportunity offered by negotiations with Morocco “to bring Rabat to respect the objective” of the talks as determined by Security Council Resolution 1754.
Meanwhile, the minister declares that “for the moment, no positive indicator points to the willingness of the other party (...) to put an end to the policy of the fait accompli, occupation by armed force and the denial of the commitments it has signed up to.” [Reuters]

12.06.07
Moroccan repression against Saharawi citizens in the occupied territories is not conducive to creating a favourable climate for the negotiations between the Polisario and Morocco, warns the President of the Saharawi Republic, Mohamed Abdelaziz, in a letter sent to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon. [SPS]

12.06.07, In a letter to Ban Ki-moon, Mohamed Abdelaziz  announces the composition of the Saharawi delegation, which will travel to New York, led by Mr. Mahfoud Ali Baba, President of the Saharawi National Council:  Brahim Ghali, Polisario representative in Spain,  Mr. Khaddad, in charge of coordination between the Polisario Front and MINURSO and Ahmed Boukhari representative of the Polisario Front at the UN. It is the same delegation who attended the Houston talks in 1997, this time strengthened by the addition of a presidential counselor, Bachir Sgheir and the Polisario Front representative for Great Britain and Ireland, Sidi Mohamed Omar. [SPS]

13.06.07
The Moroccan delegation comprises Chakib Benmoussa, Minister of the Interior, Taieb Fassi Fihri, Minister delegate for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Fouad Ali Al Himma, Minister delegate for the Interior, Khalihenna Ould Errachid, president of the Royal Consultative Council for Saharan Affairs (CORCAS), Mohamed Yassine Mansouri, Director general of Studies and Documentation and, El Mostafa Sahel, Permanent representative of Morocco to the UN.[AKI]

15.06.07: Mauritania: The former transition Prime Minister, Sidi Mohamed Ould Boubacar will travel to New York at the head of a delegation of Mauritanian observers. He already took part in meetings in Houston in 1997.
[Mauritanie web]

Special Page: Négociations - déclarations - documents- médias: http://www.arso.org/UNnegociations180607.htm

SOLIDARITY

01.06.07, Russie
Conference in Moscow to denounce Moroccan repression in Western Sahara, UPES, 03.06.07: http://www.upes.org/body1_eng.asp?field=sosio_eng&id=257
Constitution of a Committee of solidarity with Western Sahara in Moscow, UPES, 03.06.07: http://www.upes.org/body1_eng.asp?field=sosio_eng&id=256

02.06.07, Espagne
Près de 10'000 enfants sahraouis passeront les deux mois d'été en Espagne. [SERVIMEDIA]

02.06.07, Madrid
Las voces del Sahara se han dejado oír durante todo el día en la Feria del Libro de Madrid. En el Pabellón de Encuentros Fundación Círculo de Lectores se han celebrado durante toda la jornada actividades con la cultura saharaui como protagonista, organizadas por la Asociación de Amigos del Pueblo Saharaui.
Charla: Conservación de los recursos naturales en el Sáhara Occidental, con Sidi Omar (Representante del Frente Polisario en el Reino Unido), y Pedro Pinto Leite (Miembro fundador de la Asociación Inernacional de Juristas por el Sahara Occidental).

Australia
4 June-4 August Malainin Lakhal, Secretary General of the Saharawi Writers and Journalists Union, is in Australia for a two month speaking tour. To follow the numerous meetings, interventions, seminars etc organized see the UPES website: http://www.upes.org/default_eng.asp

INTERNET

New address:  Intifada du Sahara, in arabic:  http://www.intifadadusahara.jeeran.com
Updated and with a new look: Western Sahara Online: http://www.wsahara.net/
Actualizacion del web de Cantabria por el Sahara: http://www.cantabriaporelsahara.com/home.php
Some videos des manifestations d'étudiants: http://goufia.blogspot.com/

Documents, analyses ....

International Crisis Group Reports

International Crisis Group (en français)

International Crisis Group (en castellano)

Remarks by Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Welch Update on North Africa House Foreign Affairs Committee June 6, 2007 : http://foreignaffairs.house.gov/110/wel060607.htm

Journalism in support of occupation, Nick Brooks, 04.06.07:
http://nickbrooks.wordpress.com/2007/06/04/journalism-in-support-of-occupation/
Comment about the May 31st edition of Spiegel Online, which carries an article by Daniel Steinvorth with the title “Peace for the Big Sandbox: Western Sahara Eyes a Hopeful Future”.

El Sahara ocupado, John Charney, Abogado chileno, asesor del diputado Marco Enriquez-Ominami. Blog de la Asociación Chilena de Amistad con la República Árabe Saharaui Democrática, 06.06.07: http://www.saharaui.cl/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=64&Itemid=31

Ljadra Mint Mabruk (Khadra mint Mabrouk): La poesía de la Revolución: http://aziza-brahim.blogspot.com/2007/05/blog-post_4200.html

Lefrig, Boletín informativo del Centro de Documentación y Museo de la Resistencia del Pueblo Saharaui y la Solidaridad Internacional. Número 11, Junio 2007: http://www.gloobal.info/saharaui/boletin11.htm

CODESA Informa: Testimonio de Fatma Ayach en el parlamento Sudafricano, blog Sahara Resiste, 15.06.07: http://sahararesiste.blogspot.com/2007/06/codesa-informa-testimonio-de-fatma.html

La propuesta marroquí de autonomía de 2007: demasiados agujeros negros, Por Carlos Ruiz Miguel, GEES, Análisis nº 196 | 15 de Junio de 2007: http://www.gees.org/articulo/4141/

CD Western Sahara - Remixiing Saharauis, recreaciones de Hugo Westerdahl de canciones saharauis: http://www.nubenegra.com/catalogo/index_ampli.php3?id=118

Appel au Conseil des droits de l'homme (5ème session, du 11-18 juin 2007 à Genève). Débat thématique sur le rapport de M. Léandro Despouy , rapporteur spécial des Nations unies pour l'indépendance des juges et avocats, Front Polisario, représentation pour la Suisse et les Nations unies, Genève, le 11 juin 2007: http://polisario-suisse.blogspot.com/2007/06/appel.html

OPINIONS: http://opinions.arso.org

NEW PUBLICATIONS
[External links to newspapers may not be valid after some days because the servers are restarted]

Français
>> Revue de la presse internationale francophone: http://fr.groups.yahoo.com/group/revue-de-presse-sahara-occidental/messages

English
>> English publications on Sahara Update mailinglist: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Sahara-update/messages

Castellano
>> Revista de la prensa en español http://es.groups.yahoo.com/group/revista-de-prensa-sahara-occidental/messages

Italiano
Attualità in italiano: El Ouali Bologna: http://www.saharawi.org/saharawi.htm +Radio for Peace http://www.radiokcentrale.it/du.htm

Português

Deutsch

Norsk


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