PAN MEP condemns repression and expulsion of activist from Western Sahara

PUSL.- Francisco Guerreiro, MEP of the PAN (People, Animals and Nature) spoke yesterday at the European plenary session condemning the repression in the occupied territories of Western Sahara and the recent expulsion of Isabel Lourenço, Portuguese citizen and human rights activist.

The MEP emphasizes that the continued crackdown on activists and the Saharawi people by the Kingdom of Morocco must end and that the European Commission must take a firm stand in the defense of human rights in Western Sahara.

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EP ignores CJEU and approves EU-Morocco fisheries agreement that finances occupation of Western Sahara

PUSL.- MEPs today approved the EU-Morocco fisheries agreement which includes the waters of Western Sahara. MEPs not only failed to comply with the judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) but also directly violated international humanitarian law.

Refusal to bring the agreement to the European court

Before voting on the agreement, MEPs rejected by 189 votes to 410, with 36 abstentions, a petition asking the EU Court to assess their compatibility with the EU Treaty.

In an official communiqué the EU states that this vote ”
does not prejudice the outcome of the political process on the status of Western Sahara. “This statement is curious because the status is well defined and the CJEU itself has reaffirmed that Morocco has no sovereignty over the non-autonomous territory of Western Sahara. Read more

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Declaration by MEP Paloma Lopez of IU on the vote on the EU-Morocco Agreement


PUSL.- Statement on the vote regarding Schaake (A8-0471 / 2018) EU-Morocco Agreement on the amendment of Protocols 1 and 4 of the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement

I voted against this report because it fails to comply with the rulings of the CJEU regarding the recognition of Western Sahara as an independent territory of Morocco and the necessary consent of the Saharawi people on the use of their resources.

The abuse has been repeated. The Saharawi people are again victims of an illegal decision about their territory and resources. This agreement also violates the Council’s negotiating mandate to the Commission on respect for EU principles and Human Rights. Endorsing this agreement that violates International Law, the EU is delegitimized by interfering in the peace process and the resolution of the conflict in the terms established in the resolutions of the United Nations. Read more

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Statement of vote by MEP Ana Gomes (Socialist Party – Portugal) Vote on the EU-Morocco agreement on the amendment of Protocols 1 and 4 to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement

Vote at the Strasbourg plenary session on the EU-Morocco agreement on the amendment of Protocols 1 and 4 to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement

Ana Gomes (Socialist Party – Portugal)

I voted against this agreement. In consciousness. The right of self-determination of the people of Western Sahara is not negotiable in exchange for political-economic advantages. I support that Morocco benefits from a privileged partnership with the EU, but not at the expense of the rights of the Saharawi people.

The EU must respect International Law and the negotiation process within the framework of the United Nations. By approving this agreement, the European Union institutions violate the International Law and disrespect the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU). The CJEU has explicitly stated that the consent of the people of the Sahara is necessary.

It is unacceptable to confuse the “people” with the “population”, which also includes Moroccan settlers. Morocco has no legitimacy to represent the Saharawi people and the EU cannot agree with Morocco on the interests of the Saharawi people. Read more

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Statement by the Portuguese Communist Party on Revision of the Association Agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco– In 2016, the Court of Justice of the European Union declared the association agreement between the European Union and Morocco illegal. This illegality has to do with the territories of Western Sahara that are illegally occupied by the Moroccan army and whose resources are included in the agreement.

By determination of the court the European Union was forced to revise this agreement. But the review by the European Union runs counter to the court’s determination and constitutes an affront to United Nations resolutions. The consultation allegedly carried out in the occupied territories was a simulacrum leaving out those who are, under the United Nations, the only legitimate representatives of the Saharawi people. Read more

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List of MEPs who do not respect the CJEU and international law

PUSL.- Attached is the list of the votes on the Association Agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco which took place this week.

PUSL found it necessary to publish the exhaustive list of Members by political group and country because of the serious consequences of this vote.

Regardless of personal or partisan opinion on the Western Sahara conflict, there was a decision by the Court of Justice of the European Union which was very clear as to the illegality of the inclusion of the territory of Western Sahara without the consent of the Saharawi People in the now-voted EU-Morocco agreement.

In fact, it was not only a judgment but three (links below) which thus joined the resolutions of the United Nations, the African Union, the Hague Tribunal and several international tribunals. Read more

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Rapporteur of the EP of the pact to include the Sahara in the agreement with Morocco resigns because of her links with Rabat .- The head of the negotiation in the European Parliament of the agreement to include Western Sahara in the trade agreement of agricultural and fishery products between the European Union and Morocco, French liberal MEP, Patricia Lalonde, has resigned as rapporteur for a conflict of interest for her alleged links with Rabat.

The French MEP, who was also a member of the Council of EuroMedA with close ties to the Moroccan government, left as speaker before the vote on the agreement on the International Trade Commission of the European Parliament on Monday, announced the president of the Commission, the German socialist Bernard Lange.

Lange has ensured in any case that, after “the discussions on the independence of the rapporteur with regard to Morocco”, her case “will be investigated by a specific committee of the Parliament” to determine if the ethical standards of the institution have been respected. Read more

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EQUO denounces to the EU conflict of interests of Hill + Knowlton and attempt of manipulation of decisions on Western Sahara

PUSL.- MEP Florent Marcellesi of the Greens / EFA group EQUO has complained to the EU authorities about a potential conflict of interest of the consultancy firm Hill + Knowlton International Belgium. (see attached letter).

According to news published in recent days the Moroccan government is one of the main clients of Hill + Knowlton International Belgium (H + K) whose director general, Alain Berger is also the founder of the NGO EuroMedA, which carries out activities directly related to Morocco in the European Parliament . If confirmed, it would violate the EU Transparency Code of Conduct, since H + K would obtain information concerning Morocco and Western Sahara dishonestly.

In the letter, Florent Marcellesi defines this H + K activity as particularly disturbing because “the Moroccan government has been and possibly continues to be a leading client of H + K and the NGO EuroMedA is directly involved in relation to Morocco in the European Parliament, including public events. The EuroMedA Foundation does not appear in the EU lobby register. Read more

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GUE/NGL: Parliament must examine MEP conflicts of interest over EU-Morocco trade dossier

The GUE/NGL group expresses its concern about a possible violation of Parliament’s code of conduct by several MEPs involved in discussions on files concerning relations between the EU, Morocco, and Western Sahara.

The MEPs in question failed to disclose their membership of the board of EuroMedA, a foundation with links to the Moroccan government. The case seems to present a clear conflict of interests.

For this reason, we support the request made to President Tajani by the Greens/EFA group to refer the matter for investigation.

The GUE/NGL has also asked the Chair and political coordinators of Parliament’s Committee on International Trade to reconsider whether MEP Patricia Lalonde should remain Parliament’s rapporteur on a key EU-Morocco agreement*. Lalonde has never disclosed “any actual or potential conflict of interest in relation to the matter under consideration” as called for by Parliament’s Code of conduct. Read more

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European MEPs denounced for breach of code of conduct favoring Moroccan interests and occupation of Western Sahara

PUSL.- Philippe Lamberts, co-chair of the Greens / ALE Group in the European Parliament, wrote a letter to Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament, on 27 November denouncing fourMEPs who have been active in defending Moroccan interests without having informed the Parliament on its conflicts of interest and requests that the matter be referred to the Advisory Committee on the Code of Conduct.

Lamberts alerts to the fact that “to date, none of the above-mentioned MEPs appear to have disclosed their involvement in this Foundation within their declaration of financial interests, despite the obligation to do so under article 4.2 (d) of the Code of Conduct[1].

This is particularly disturbing given that all of these MEPs have been directly involved in the ongoing parliamentary consent procedure of the EU-Morocco Trade Liberalization Agreement in relation to Western Sahara and the EU-Morocco Partnership Fisheries Agreement.” Read more

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Report of the EP delegation visiting the occupied territories omits and invents data

PUSL.- The European Parliament’s International Trade Commission (INTA), which paid a visit from the 2nd to 5th of September , published its report in which it omitted data from the meetings held with the Saharawi associations in El Aaiun and did not mention the demonstration by the Saharawi population which took place during the visit and whose dispersion by the Moroccan occupation authorities resulted in several injured among the demonstrators.

They also “forgot” to mention several Saharawi associations with whom they had gathered, choosing to say “and other representatives”. In the report submitted by the 3 INTA members, there is also the name of an activist who was not even in the occupied territories on September 4 between 3.10 and 4 pm when the delegation claims to have met him, the activist at that time was in Granada, Spain according to photos published on facebook.

According to reports by activists from various associations who met at the Hotel Parador in El Aaiun with the EP delegation, everyone clearly reaffirmed to the delegation that the legitimate representative of the Saharawi population is the Polisario Front, another fact that was “forgotten”. Read more

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