Several sources in the EU have confirmed to Western Sahara Resource Watch that the EU-Moroccan trade agreement entered into force on 1st of October 2012.
The agreement covers trade in agricultural and fisheries products. It was supposed to enter into force already in July, but was postponed due to slow ratification process by Morocco. Western Sahara Resource Watch (WSRW) wrote about the dangers of the agreement in the report Label and Liability earlier this year.
The entering into force coincides now with the agricultural season in occupied Western Sahara.
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.