Western Sahara: Spanish fishing vessels accused by NGO of profiting from territory’s undefined status to access resources
After decades of intermittent conflict, the situation of Western Sahara continues to be one of the more complex issues of Intl. nature. The Saharawi people that historically has inhabited this territory continues today without meeting their demands for self-determination; approximately 200,000 of them remain exiled in refugee camps in Algeria or in other countries. The rest live under the Morocco jurisdiction due to the annexation of their territory to that country. According to the intl. law, Morocco does not have any sort of legal sovereignty on Western Sahara, while Spain continues administrating this land. According to a report in Spanish by the NGO Observatory on business & Human Rights in the Mediterranean, this has allowed Spanish fishing companies to establish in Western Sahara territory to profit from the marine natural resources without being accountable to the Saharawi people. The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited eight out of ten companies mentioned in the report: Grupo Amasua, Profand, Grupo Conservas Garavilla (Isabel), Discefa, Congelados Salgado, Canosa Grupo Empresarial, Viveros Merimar, Angulas Aguinaga and Frigoríficos Rosa de los Vientos to respond. Responses by Canosa Grupo Empresarial (in Spanish) and Grupo Conservas Garavilla are available; the other companies did not respond.