STATEMENT REGARDING THE EUROPEAN COURT's RECENT RULING
by Suzanne Scholte, Chair of US WESTERN SAHARA FOUNDATION
The US Western Sahara Foundation applauds the recent ruling by the European Union's Court of Justice regarding the EU Morocco Fisheries Agreement. Once again we see the courts affirm what the International Court of Justice ruled in 1975 in rejecting Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara. Even in the United States this occupation, that resulted from Morocco's illegal invasion of Western Sahara , is not recognized as the 2004 USA -Morocco free trade agreement excludes Western Sahara because the US does not recognize Moroccan Sovereignty. In accordance with international law, the African Union recognizes the Western Sahara as a sovereign country and on February 27 the European Court reaffirmed that Western Sahara is not part of Morocco and declared illegal any agreement with Morocco over the resources of the Western Sahara and reaffirmed the right of self-determination for the Sahrawi people.
It is time for the international community to stand for the implementation of international law regarding Western Sahara and to stop the Moroccan challenges to the international community. We regret that the Government of France, which is suppose to uphold liberty, equality and fraternity, continues to be the main country responsible for Morocco's illegal behavior and brutal occupation and treatment of the Sahrawi people in their homeland of Western Sahara.
We hope that the US government will reaffirm and advance the implementation of the right to self-determination for the people of Western Sahara joining the Africa Union and all nations who believe in the rule of law and the right to self determination.
It is long overdue for a referendum that is free and fair to be held as long promised by the UN -- otherwise we should call for Morocco to end its illegal occupation of Western Sahara and allow the Sahrawi people the freedom to return to their homeland.