Press

Western Sahara: WSRW underlines need to struggle to enforce law

APS - 13 February 2017

LONDON- The current challenge for the Western Sahara Resource Watch (WSRW) "is to struggle for the implementation of the law following the ruling of the European Union Court of Justice," which excluded Western Sahara from any EU-Morocco free trade deal, said Monday in London the current chair of WSRW, Joanna Allan.

"The EUCJ ruling is a victory of a battle between unequal forces, and we need now to focus our efforts on imposing its implementation", Joanna Allan, who is an active member of the British branch of WSRW, Western Sahara Campaign UK, told APS.

On 21 December 2016, a ruling of the EU Court of Justice concluded that the association and free trade agreements between the EU and Morocco do not apply to Western Sahara, as it is a distinct and separate territory, in accordance with the United Nations Charter.

Allan said that the "EUCJ has clearly ruled that Western Sahara products cannot be included in EU-Morocco trade deals without the consent of Sahrawi people, and that Western Sahara cannot be considered as de facto administered by Morocco, and that Polisario Front, which filed the complaint, is the sole legitimate representative of Sahrawi people."

"It is a triple failure for Morocco," added Joanna Allan.

She also recalled the statement made by the European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, Miguel Arias Canete, who clearly said that the EU would henceforth take into consideration "the separate and distinct status" of the territory of Western Sahara when considering energy imports from Morocco.

She added that "this is a shift in the EU Commission's position vis-�-vis Western Sahara."