The Western Sahara Campaign welcomes the judgement of the European Court on our case that the High Court referred to the European Court on 27 April 2016. The Court have ruled that the EU-Morocco fish deal is illegal if Western Sahara is included.
This judgement of the full European Court (Press Release from the Court) confirms that, as Western Sahara is legally defined as a non self-governing territory by the United Nations, any fishery agreements between Morocco and the European Union cannot apply to the waters of the Western Sahara.
"Taking account of the fact that the territory of Western Sahara does not form part of the territory of the Kingdom of Morocco, the waters adjacent to the territory of Western Sahara are not part of the Moroccan fishing zone referred to in the Fisheries Agreement.".
Again the court has given a clear message to the European Commission that any agreements, whether for fish, other produce or aviation with Western Sahara must have the consent of the POLISARIO Front or it will be illegal.
Yet again a court has confirmed the clear position that Morocco’s continued occupation of Western Sahara is illegal under international law.
We now wait to hear what steps will be taken to enforce international law by ceasing all trade with Morocco until a free and fair referendum of self-determination is held under UN supervision that determines the legal status of the Western Sahara.”
This judgement makes it clear that European trawlers in the waters of Western Sahara should cease fishing immediately.
John Gurr Coordinator of the Western Sahara Campaign said: "For over 40 years the international community has stood by and allowed the Moroccan authorities to profit from an illegal and brutal occupation of Western Sahara. They have plundered the fish and phosphates for huge profits whilst over 150000 Saharawi live in refugee camps. It is time for the international community to enforce international law and allow the Saharawi, the indigenous people of Western Sahara, to decide for themselves who profits from the natural resources of their territory, as they await their right to self-determination to be fulfilled".
WESTERN SAHARA CAMPAIGN UK
The Western Sahara Campaign works in solidarity with the Saharawi people to generate political support in order to advance their right to self-determination and to promote their human rights.
Our role is to lobby the UK Government and the EU. You can help us to ensure the UK does not ignore the voice of the Saharawi people.
Follow the news about EU's illegal fisheries in Western Sahara