Protest (Public Assembly, symbolic public acts, slogans, singing. Repression: direct physical violence, control of information)
“The Moroccan security forces violently dispersed a peaceful demonstration organized by dozens of Sahrawi in the city of El Aaiun (occupied Western Sahara) to demand the holding of a referendum of self-determination and the immediate release of all Saharawi political prisoners.”
Political Prisoners (Repression: imprisonment
There were reports of imprisoned peaceful protesters and activists facing harsh conditions, and protest against these situations.
In the townof Daila (occupied Western Sahara) a protest is held by mothers of Saharawi political prisoners “for the immediate release of their sons without conditions or excuses.” The mothers also called for and end to harsh sentencing. The prisoners were arrested for protesting for the right to self-determination.
Two former Saharawi political prisoners are arrested in the town of El Aaiun (Morocco), one is released and the other transfered to prision in El Aaiun (occupied Western Sahara).
On 28 September a Saharawi political prisoner (who was arrested in November 2010 and sentenced to 30 years imprisonment by a military court ) began a hunger strike while in prison in Morocco due to poor medical and health access conditions.
Control of environmental Resources (Legal recourses, trade embargoes, appeal to human rights)
A Western Sahara NGO brought a case to London’s Administrative Court to challenge to two EU measures concerning Morocco. 1) a “preferential tariff applicable to imports from Morocco of goods originating from the Western Sahara”. 2) a fisheries agreement between the EU and Morocco in the territorial waters of Western Sahara.
The underlying complaint by the Western Sahara NGO is that both EU measures fail to distinguish between the sovereign territory of Morocco and Western Sahara, as they should, given that Morocco’s occupation is in breach of the principles of international law and the UN Charter governing the right of self-determination.
In his judgment; The Hon Mr Justice Blake noted, “reports of discrimination in the field of business and employment and political expression against indigenous Saharans in favour of Moroccan nationals who have moved into the territory since 1975”.
Rosa Curling from law firm Leigh Day who is representing the WSCUK said:
“We are very pleased this important issue will now be considered by the Court of Justice. There is clear evidence that Morocco has been unlawfully exporting goods to the UK from land and sea it occupies in Western Sahara.
“The people of Western Sahara are being denied their right to self-determination, including in relation to their natural resources. This cannot be allowed to continue.”
Resistance to resource exploitation:
There were large demonstrations and significant on-line resistance activism due to new resource exploitation issues, with an Irish company defying international law to start oil drilling in the coastal waters of Western Sahara ans well as deals tuna fishing.
— The Stream (@AJStream) October 17, 2015