December 11, 2020
President Donald J. Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20500
Dear Mr. President:
While we congratulate you on the success you have had in helping bring about historic agreements through your Abraham Accords, we ask that you reverse your recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara, and instead recognize the legitimate government of Western Sahara: the Sahrawi Republic.
The International Court of Justice and the European Court of Justice both have rejected Morocco’s claims of sovereignty over the territory. Up to this point no state recognizes Morocco’s claim of sovereignty over the territory. During his last year of his service, UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon described the Western Sahara as an “occupation” by Morocco that “is unacceptable” and “one of the forgotten humanitarian tragedies of our time.”
It is deeply troubling that your administration would take this action when you yourself exposed attempts by Morocco to influence Hillary Clinton to do just what you have done. Your campaign and you personally tweeted about the deep state and corruption over this issue in 2016: “Official Team Trump” shared a graphic exposing that Hillary Clinton had been promised $12 million from the Kingdom of Morocco, the invaders and occupiers of Western Sahara. “More pay for play” and “Drain the swamp” was tweeted from Team Trump. On October 31st, you personally tweeted: “Hillary’s Two Official Favors To Morocco Resulted In $28 Million For Clinton Foundation #DrainTheSwamp”
Please reverse your decision and recognize the Sahrawi Republic and show your commitment to nations that embrace democratic values, freedom of expression, the right to vote, a free market economy, equal rights for women, and religious freedom, as opposed to Kingdoms like Morocco that trample on human rights, use war and invasion to attack their neighbor, and just last month, caused war to break out by violating the cease fire when unarmed civilians were attacked across the buffer zone by the Kingdom of Morocco’s army.
Unlike the Kingdom of Morocco, the Sahrawi embrace Western ideals, in fact their intolerance of extremism and severe punishments for traffickers and anyone associated with terrorism have caused Islamic extremists to label the Sahrawi as “too close to the West and not pious enough.” A testament to their embrace of religious freedom is the fact that many Americans, sponsored by Christian churches, are openly living in the refugee camps and American children have even been born there to these Christian families.
Please reverse your decision and recognize the Sahrawi Republic and instead call for Morocco to end its illegal occupation.
Thank you for your consideration of this appeal.
(This letter of appeal to President Trump, circulated by the US Western Sahara Foundation and signed by many notable American NGO leaders and activists, was sent to the White House December 11, 2020.)
Suzanne Suzanne ScholteSeoul Peace Prize LaureatePresident, Defense Forum FoundationChair, US Western Sahara Foundationwww.defenseforumfoundation.org