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Sahara separatists in cannabis crackdown

Posted on August 19th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

North AfricaSecurity forces of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic on Aug. 19 announced the seizure of 300 kilograms  of cannabis in operations along the security wall built by the Moroccan military, which divides Morocco-occupied Western Sahara on the western side from the interior desert controlled by the  Sahrawi rebels. In a statement to the press, the Saharawi National Gendarmerie Directorate said their patrols "have arrested three groups [that] were smuggling drugs from Morocco to northern Mali via the Saharawi liberated territory." The statement said five four-wheel-drive vehicles had been seized as well. "These groups are now at the hand of Saharawi justice," added the statement.

The busts could enflame tensions in the long stalemate between Morocco and the  Saharawi rebels over the contested territory. But Morocco is in a poor position to complain about the crackdown. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recently announced in its 2013 World Report that the Kingdom of Morocco remains the "main producer and supplier" of hashish globally, exported primarily to European and African markets. The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) backed up these findings, stating that approximately 72% of the total 138 tons of cannabis resin seized by the customs authorities worldwide in 2011 came from Morocco. (Sahara Press Service, Aug. 19)

 

Comments

Saharawi independence fighters not "separatists"

Bill Weinberg's picture

We couldn't resist the alliterative headline, but we recognize that the  Saharawi rebels are not really "separatists" but independence fighters, as no government on Earth recognizes Morocco's claim to Western Sahara, which it has been illegally occupying since Spanish colonial administrators withdrew from the territory in 1975. Moroccan propaganda has long portrayed the Saharawi rebel organization, the Polisario Front, as mixed up with al-Qaeda terrorists—a highly dubious charge. Polisario now seems to be using the hashish trade as propaganda against Morocco. There is certainly a lot more to that accusation, but it is still sad to see the Saharawi stooping to exploit the cannabis stigma... See our in-depth coverage at World War 4 Report.

Comment by Bill Weinberg on Aug 19th, 2013 at 8:04 pm

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