Western Sahara

I understand the UK’s position on Western Sahara is consistent and long-standing. The Government considers the final status of Western Sahara as undetermined, and supports UN-led efforts to reach a lasting and mutually acceptable political solution that provides for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara.

The UK considers Morocco to be the de facto administering power of Western Sahara, which remains on the UN list of non-self-governing territories. I would like to point out that the conduct of economic activities by Morocco in Western Sahara is not in itself illegal.  As de facto administering power, in order to comply with international law, Morocco must ensure that economic activities under its administration are conducted to the benefit and in the interests of the people of Western Sahara. Such economic activities include the exploitation of natural resources.

The UK encourages both sides to cooperate with the United Nations process to reach a mutually acceptable solution that provides for the self-determination for the people of Western Sahara.