GENEVA – The international network of progressive parties, “Progressive International”, called, in a statement published on Thursday, for the immediate decolonisation of Western Sahara, Africa’s last colony, demanding the implementation of UN resolution 1514 adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1960 granting independence to countries under colonial rule.
“In the 20th century, the peoples and nations (…) of the African continent rose up (and freed themselves) from colonialism. One exception remains: Western Sahara. Today, progressive forces around the world unite to demand its liberation,” the network wrote in the preamble to its statement entitled “Western Sahara will be liberated”.
Recalling the historic resolution on the granting of independence to countries and peoples under colonial domination (1514) adopted in 1960 by 89 states at the UN General Assembly, the signatories demand the immediate decolonisation of Western Sahara and an end to foreign exploitation of its land and natural resources, the withdrawal of Moroccan troops and the recognition of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR).
“We, progressive forces around the world, stand with the Saharawi people. As long as (the Saharawis) remain under foreign occupation, the process of decolonisation in Africa will remain incomplete”, the signatories of the document stated, arguing that “the time has come to liberate Western Sahara”.
“Western Sahara will be liberated!
We unite to demand the immediate decolonisation of Western Sahara – the last colony of Africa.
In the 20th century, peoples and nations across the African continent rose up to liberate themselves from colonialism. One exception remained: Western Sahara. Now, progressive forces around the world are uniting to demand its liberation.
Western Sahara is Africa’s last colony.
It is a displaced people, with half of the Saharawis forced to leave their homes to live in refugee camps.
It is a divided nation, with a 2,700-kilometre wall and seven million landmines separating communities and families across the border between Western Sahara and Algeria.
It is a terrorised community, with Moroccan occupation forces employing extreme tactics – including enforced disappearance, rape and torture – to maintain control over the territory.
It is a frontier of green imperialism, with Morocco using renewable energy infrastructure built in Western Sahara by foreigners to green its occupation.
And it is a history erased, with nations refusing to recognise the rights, enshrined in the UN Charter, of the Saharawi people to self-determination.
The time has come to liberate Western Sahara.
Recalling the historic Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, adopted in 1960 by 89 States in the United Nations General Assembly, we, the undersigned, demand the immediate decolonisation of Western Sahara:
– An end to foreign exploitation: The exploitation of the lands and resources of Western Sahara by foreign companies in support of the Moroccan occupation must cease immediately.
– The withdrawal of Moroccan troops: Morocco’s illegal occupation and its brutal regime of killings, disappearances and torture must end, paving the way for the reunification of the Saharawi people in peace and dignity.
– Recognition of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic:
The preamble to the 1960 UN Declaration reminds us of a fundamental law of history: “The process of liberation is irresistible and irreversible.” Those who oppose the self-determination of peoples seek nothing more than to stop the flow of time – placing history in a regime of fragility, violence and exploitation.
We, progressive forces around the world, are on the side of the Saharawi people. As long as they remain under foreign occupation, the decolonisation process in Africa will remain incomplete. Western Sahara will be liberated.
Nazma Akter, trade union leader, Bangladesh
Carlos Ron, President of the Simon Bolivar Institute and Vice-Minister for North America, Venezuela
Nick Estes, teacher and citizen of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe, USA
Lotta Johnsson Fornarve, Member of Parliament, Sweden
Andreas Schieder, President of the European Parliament’s Intergroup on Western Sahara, Austria
Marisa Matias, Member of the European Parliament’s Intergroup on Western Sahara, Portugal
José Gusmão, Member of the European Parliament Intergroup for Western Sahara, Portugal
Mohammed El-Kurd, writer and activist, Palestine
Central Única dos Trabalhadores, Trade Union, Brazil
Federação Única dos Petroleiros, Trade Union, Brazil
Mick Wallace, Member of the European Parliament, Ireland
Clare Daly, Member of European Parliament, Ireland
Gerardo Pisarello, Member of the European Parliament, Spain
Andrés Sanches, activist, Spain
Santiago Jiménez Gómez, historian and professor, Spain
Amèrico Ologaray Orti, Spokesperson of Podem Sant Cugat, Spain
Pedro Pozuelo Gómez, activist, Brazil
Gonzalo Winter, Member of the Chamber of Deputies, Chile
María Rosa Ibarra Parejo, psychologist, Spain
Fabio Salvia, political professional, Italy
Juan Vte. Martínez, activist, Spain
Zoraida Hernández, human rights lawyer, Colombia
María Pozuelo Castro, Secretary Organisation Podem Catalunya, Spain
Mariana Martins Almeida, activist, Netherlands
Pedro Pinto Pinto Leite, Secretary of the International Platform of Jurists for East Timor, The Netherlands
Jesús L. Garay, activist, Spain
Harry Halpin, Managing Director, Nym Technologies SA, Switzerland
Jan Keulen, journalist, The Netherlands
Manu Pineda, Vice-President of the European Parliament Intergroup on Western Sahara, Spain
Juozas Olekas, Member of the European Parliament Intergroup for Western Sahara, Lithuania
Gado Hussaini Titus, activist, Nigeria
Pernando Barrena, Member of the European Parliament’s Intergroup for Western Sahara, Basque Country
Ines Abdel Razek, International Advocate, Palestinian Institute for Public Diplomacy, Palestine
Suleiman Musa Pema, Women and Youth Development Leadership Initiative, Nigeria
Sylvana Simons, Member of the House of Representatives, The Netherlands
Martín Clavijo, President of the International Relations Commission of the Frente Amplio, Uruguay
Roberto Uriarte Torrealday, Deputy of Unidos Podemos in the Spanish Congress of Deputies, Spain
Serigne Mbaye Diouf, Deputy of Unidos Podemos in the Assembly of Madrid, Spain
Lucía Muñoz Dalda, Deputy of Unidos Podemos in the Congress of Deputies, Spain
María Eugenia Rodríguez Palop, Member of the European Parliament, Spain
Roger Waters, activist and co-founder of Pink Floyd, United Kingdom
Srecko Horvat, philosopher, Croatia
Harry van Bommel, former Member of Parliament, The Netherlands
Miguel Urbán Crespo, Member of the European Parliament Intergroup on Western Sahara, Spain
Annie Raja, General Secretary of the NFIW and NEC of the Communist Party of India, India
Özlem Demirel, Member of the European Parliament, Germany
Manolo de los Santos, Co-Executive Director of The People’s Forum, USA