Statement by the African Movement of Solidarity with the Saharawi People

March 11, 2010 -- A meeting of the Popular African Movement of Solidarity with the Saharawi People was held on the eve of the 34th anniversary of the proclamation of SADR (Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic), in Algiers, on the 26thSouth Africa, Algeria and Nigeria. An important delegation from the SADR was present at this meeting. of February 2010. It grouped civil and political movements from

The delegates included representatives of Movements of National Liberation, parliamentarians and political figures, Trade Unionists, representatives from different associations dealing with Women, Peasants, Youth and Students, Lawyers, Sports and Culture. In keeping with their commitment and convictions, and faithfulness to their history, they resolved to support the Sahrawi people, and their sole legitimate representative, the POLISARIO Front and its state, the SADR, a founder member of the African Union.

On this joyous occasion, the gathering formed a single, common delegation to take part in the official celebration of the 34th anniversary of the proclamation of the RASD on the 27th February 2010 in Bir Lehlu (a Liberated Territory of the SADR).

The South African delegation participated with a unique and common position to pay homage to the on-going struggle for independence, carried out for over three decades by the Sahrawi People under the leadership of the POLISARIO Front against the illegal occupation of their country by Morocco. A special tribute is paid to the heroic and peaceful resistance of Sahrawi militants in the remaining Occupied Territories of Western Sahara.

It is the responsibility of this Africa-wide popular movement to strive for the settlement of this conflict in accordance with international law, by enabling the Saharawis to exercise their right to self-determination. It is a fundamental and unavoidable parameter for a peaceful decolonisation of this last colony in Africa.

Morocco has unfortunately, continued to be insensitive to international calls for the decolonization of Western Sahara according to International Law. It has consistently ignored its commitments. This has been exemplified in the last West Chester talks, in New York (under the auspices of the United Nations, 10-11 February 2010), where.... Moreover, Morocco continues with its pillage of Sahrawi resources and with its systematic and inhumane repression of Saharawis in total violation of the rules and principles of International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian law. It refuses to free political prisoners and does not respect liberties in the Occupied Territories. All these, are in total conflict with the terms of the cease-fire between the POLISARIO and Morocco.

In view of these grave violations of human rights and international law, this Popular African Movement of Solidarity with the SADR is more determined to organise itself as a network that could be enlarged to a wider African citizen participation, which will meet in a constitutive general assembly on Africa’s Day on May 25th 2010. This assembly will formally set up this network which will be multifaceted and action-oriented, for the benefit of the Sahrawi cause.

The participants to the Algiers meetings decided on the following:

To write, in all responsibility, to the following:

·       The General Secretary of the United Nations

·       Members of the Security Council

·       President of the European Commission

·       President of the European Union

·       President of the European Parliament

·       President of the African Union

·       The Special Envoy of the General Secretary of the United Nations, Mr. Ross Christopher, to request the following:

2.    To act according to the principle of establishing the Right of Peoples to Self-   Determination in accordance with Resolution UNGA 1514(XV), which will be celebrated in December 2010, at its 50th anniversary.

Morocco must cease its campaign of terror and intimidation against the defenceless Saharawi civilians, especially the human rights activists. The occupying state must also protect people and their properties and allow the free access of independent observers and the media to the Occupied Territories. The United Nations should also establish an instrument of surveillance in the territory.

Morocco should stop immediately the illegal pillage of natural resources of Western Sahara.

To actively participate, as popular African petitioners, to the proceedings of the 4th Commission of the United Nations on decolonisation

We call on all African states to play their historical role in completing the process of decolonization of the African continent by giving full and unconditional support to the independence of the Sahrawi people in their own state in accordance with the functions referential text of the OAU and the African Union.

To massively participate, as African representatives to the EUCOCO international conference to be held in France in October 2010.

To support all the actions undertaken by the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLGA) and encourage the twinning of cities from Algeria, Nigeria, South Africa and the RASD and enlarging the scheme to other African cities.

To organise a high level meeting of Red Cross and Red Crescent associations of Algeria, Nigeria and South Africa, in order to intensify humanitarian actions for the Saharawis in the refugee camps.

In view of the great importance that such meetings (between the representatives of Algeria, Nigeria and South Africa) have, we aim to multiply them and hold them on a regular basis and by alternating the venues. The next meeting will be held in South Africa in the second semester of 2010.

Denounce the Moroccan authorities actions against the human rights activists who visit their families in the Saharawi refugee camps. A group of them is currently on a visit to the refugee camps and their detention is expected  after returning to the Occupied territories of Western Sahara.