Morocco has never asked representatives of the Sahrawi people whether they in fact wish a development of the potential uranium deposits in Western Sahara. Despite of this, Morocco keeps exploring for the resource in the territory that it brutally occupied in 1975.
"Several foreign firms are in negotiations with ONHYM for the signing of exploration and development agreements", according to the new report, which later states that firms only have "shown interest".
The explorations were made in 2008, based on airborne aeromagnetic studies carried out in 2004. The drilling equipment was transported to the Glibat Lafhouda probably after a public tender issued by ONHYM in 2008.
According to the UN, exploration of natural resources in Western Sahara cannot take place if the Sahrawis are not consulted.
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
It's not easy keeping up with all the different legal proceedings relating to Western Sahara. For the sake of clarity, here's an overview of the five different cases at the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Leading activists from Western Sahara are condemned to sentences ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment in connection to a mass protest in 2010 denouncing the Saharawi people’s social and economic marginalization in their occupied land; the Gdeim Izik protest camp.
At COP22, beware of what you read about Morocco’s renewable energy efforts. An increasing part of the projects take place in the occupied territory of Western Sahara and is used for mineral plunder, new WSRW report documents.