Fighting erupted last month between Morocco and separatists in the disputed Western Sahara , a territory claimed by Morocco . The sparsely populated region is bordered by Algeria to the east, Mauritania to the east and south, the Atlantic Ocean to the west , and Morocco to the north.
Claims over sovereignty Since the territory was ceded by Spain, Morocco has claimed Western Sahara as an integral part of its kingdom.
November 6, 1975
2.1 Kingdom of Morocco . 2.2 Polisario Front and Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. 2.3 Mauritania. 2.4 Algeria . 2.5 United Nations.
There are thousands of unexploded mines in the Western Sahara , and occasional reports of fatal explosions. Avoid driving off road and take care on main roads especially when driving in more remote areas. The territory has a poor road safety record.
The de facto capital city of Western Sahara is Tafariti. It has been the capital of the region since 2011 and is the headquarters of the 2nd military region of the SADR.
The 2020s. In November 2020, the ceasefire between the Polisario Front and Morocco broke down, leading to armed clashes between both sides. On 10 December 2020, the United States announced that it would recognize full Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara in exchange for Morocco establishing relations with Israel.
Spanish Sahara (Spanish: Sahara Español; Arabic: الصحراء الإسبانية As-Sahrā’a Al-Isbānīyah), officially the Province of the Sahara between 1958 and 1976, was the name used for the modern territory of Western Sahara when it was occupied and ruled by Spain between 1884 and 1976.
The conflict originated from an insurgency by the Polisario Front against Spanish colonial forces from 1973 to 1975 and the subsequent Western Sahara War against Morocco between 1975 and 1991. The conflict escalated after the withdrawal of Spain from the Spanish Sahara in accordance with the Madrid Accords.
1884 – Spain colonises Western Sahara , an area formerly populated by Berber tribes. 1934 – Becomes a Spanish province known as Spanish Sahara . 1957 – Newly-independent Morocco lays centuries-old claim to Western Sahara .
Morocco has enjoyed a vibrant relationship with the United States since time immemorial. In 1777, Morocco was the first country in the world to formally acknowledge the United States as an independent nation.
The overwhelming majority of the population is Sunni Muslim . Christian leaders report there are dozens of Moroccan Christians, as well as a small group of foreign resident Roman Catholics.
Morocco has occupied the larger parts of Western Sahara since 1975, and the UN has stated that any further oil exploration is illegal unless it takes place in accordance with the wishes of the people of the territory. The oil companies involved have made no efforts to seek the consent of the Saharawi people.
Algerian troops intervened in support of Polisario in January 1976, resulting in the death of 30 Algerian soldiers. Spain withdrew its troops from Spanish Sahara on January 12, 1976, and Spain’s presence in the territory formally ended on February 26, 1976. Morocco immediately claimed sovereignty over the territory.