The World March of Women staged on Saturday a peaceful demonstration in front of the Moroccan-built wall of shame that separates the people and territory of Western Sahara.

Marking the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action, the participants deplored world silence over such heinous separation wall by Morocco.

The vigil was attended by the foreign delegations present at the 7th congress of Sahrawi Women Union, underway in the Sahrawi refugee camps.

It is worth noting that Western Sahara is one of the most heavily mined areas in the world as a result of the war that broke out in the Territory in the wake of Morocco’s military invasion and occupation of Western Sahara in 1975.

According to mine action organizations working in the field, there are over 7 million landmines throughout the Territory in addition to large quantities of cluster munitions and explosive remnants of war.

Most of the landmines are buried along the 2720-km-long military wall built by the Moroccan occupying forces in Western Sahara in the early eighties.

It is to be noted that the Sahrawi Republic (SADR), a founding member of the African Union, is a State Party to the African Nuclear Weapons-Free-Zone Treaty (Treaty of Pelindaba of 2009).

In 2005, the Frente POLISARIO signed the Geneva Call’s Deed of Commitment as a sign of its commitment to banning the use of anti-personnel mines.

In addition to its establishment, in 2013, of the Sahrawi Mine Action Coordination Office (SMACO), the SADR cooperates fully with mine action organizations in conducting surveys and demining operations in the liberated Sahrawi territories.

Despite repeated calls by international bodies and organizations, Morocco still refuses to sign the Ottawa Treaty on Landmines and the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

Source: SPS