The Saharawi community – of just one million people worldwide – has found friendship and support in Mexico
Mexico is the second country in Latin America that recognizes the Democratic Sahrawi Arab Republic, one of the reasons why the five-kilometer solidarity race ” Run for the Saharawis ” will be held on October 20, on the Olympic rowing track and boating “Virgilio Uribe”, in Cuemanco, Xochimilco, in Mexico City.
The Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic is the only Arab country whose main language is Spanish, so they are of vital importance to Latin America, as they may be the connection with other Arab countries and the African continent; however, they are victims of one of the greatest repressions in Africa.
In Tinduf, Algeria, a large part of the refugee camps are found / Photo: Google Maps
The Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic was a Spanish colony until 1976 when it was occupied by Morocco and Mauritania. Subsequently, when Mauritania retired and signed a peace treaty in 1979, it was occupied by the Kingdom of Morocco; fact by which the Saharawi Government seeks its independence. Currently, 80 countries in the world – including Mexico – recognize them as a country and are a full member of the African Unity.
That is why activists and members of the Saharawi community in Mexico invite the race “Run for the Saharawis”, a territory in which our country has an important presence.
To learn more about it, Publimetro spoke with Hawuari Ahmed, first secretary of the Embassy of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, who reflected on the importance this event has for the community.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Why is the “Run for the Saharawis” race important?
– It is a race organized by the Friends for a Free Sahara collective, to support the projects carried out in the Arab refugee camps, some for more than three years.
The Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic has a part occupied by the Kingdom of Morocco. We have about 200 thousand Arab refugees part of the territory of Algeria. Our job is, first, to try to denounce why the refugees are outside their territory. In addition, together with associations and groups in Mexico, do activities to raise money for the camps. Any broker or interested party who wants to know about these projects can enter these social networks or on the Embassy page.
What is the situation that the Saharawis live in the camps?
– All refugees in the world are not guilty of being refugees. No one wants to live in a refugee camp and more in such inhospitable conditions as it is a desert.
The problem for which refugees arrived at the camps is that in 1976, when Spain leaves and signs the “Madrid Agreement”, an illegal treaty to divide us tripartite between Mauritania, in the south and Morocco, in the north, an invasion occurred which forced the Saharawis to flee their territory, because the idea of the Moroccans is to try to annihilate everything that is Saharawi.
The Saharawis left to find a refuge and concentrated on territory near Algeria. Morocco used bomber planes with white phosphorus and napalm, which are prohibited products. What is the purpose of these products? They burn the skin, dissolve the flesh and bones. They did not want to leave a Saharawi alive. We have lost thousands and thousands of Saharawis and the majority are children and old people because the men at that time went to be part of the Liberation Army that went to fight against Mauritania. That is the reason why they invaded our territory.
Why did they invade if it’s a desert? Because it is not any desert. It has oil, gold, phosphate and one of the best fishing banks in the world; But we were a million people. We are the only Arab country that speaks Spanish, we have wealth and we would be the most important door for all Latin American countries to have links with Arab and African countries.
What support do the Saharawis have worldwide? What happens to Mexico?
– At an international level we are recognized by more than 80 countries, mainly like Mexico, which has a Constitution that respects the right to self-determination of peoples. Some third world countries have not been able to support us because we know that they are not yet totally independent, there is still a foreign influence in their decisions.
We have all the support in what is international legality, because it is in our favor. We cannot demand something that is not legal. There is the Hague sentence when the Moroccans and Mauritanians went to the Hague Court demanding that the Sahara belongs to them, the ruling determined that they have neither historical nor cultural link nor anything with the territory, so it is an illegal invasion and not must be carried out; But they didn’t respect him.
We went to war with Mauritania in 1979 and then withdrew from the territory they occupied. They recognized the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic.
In the case of Mexico, it is the second country that recognizes the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, after Panama, in 1979 and has always maintained that respect, according to its Constitution.
Mexico is a respected country when it comes to international politics, although Mexicans don’t believe it. They are blinded by the internal problems they have, which are the same as in all countries. Internationally, Mexico is highly respected because it has been and will always be the cradle of many who have fled from the wars in their countries. Mexico has always respected the rights of other peoples, so it has that respect internationally. In its attributions to the United Nations, it has always been very legal and very positive.
Tell us about the link between Mexico and the Saharawi community
– The Saharawi community, in itself, is very small. We are only one million people. In Mexico there are only three, most in universities.
The associations and groups not only organize the race. There are other events such as concerts organized by Friends for a Free Sahara or participation in the Fair of Friendly Cultures.
In addition, we organize every year, in November, a trip to the Saharawi camps. Any Mexican can go, whether or not he has a project; They don’t need to be researchers. We take care of the lodging and transportation camps, the visitor only needs to pay his plane ticket.
The objective of that trip is for the Mexican to know the Saharawi families and for the families to know what the Mexican culture is like. I would like to invite all Mexicans to come to the race, to be with us. We want them to run with their hearts and see that these donations go directly to the camps.
RACE: “RUN FOR THE SAHARAWIS”
- Date: Sunday, October 20, 2019
- Registration: https://saharalibre.boletia.com/
- Departure: 8:00 am
- Start and Finish: Olympic Rowing and Canoeing Track “Virgilio Uribe”
- Travel: 5km walking, jogging or running. The goal is to contribute your grain of sand to Sahrawi refugees. At any age you can participate!
- Registration: $ 300 pesos. Your registration is for Sahrawi refugee camps in Tindouf, Algeria.
- That includes the inscription: competitor number with timing chip, shirt, commemorative medal, as well as recovery kit, hydration in route and goal and awards for the first three places of female and male branch.
- Kit delivery: Saturday October 19 from 11 to 17 hours at the Olympic Rowing and Canoeing Track “Virgilio Uribe”, located in Periférico Sur s / n, Col. Cuemanco, Alcaldía Xochimilco, Mexico City
Other Ways to Support Saharawis click here
In the same way that we always invite you to participate in our activities, today we notify you of this unfortunate situation. Thanking you in advance for your interest and asking them to keep an eye on our social networks, since in the next few days we will publish the following events! Free Sahara !!
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