orable George W. Bush
The White House
Washington, D.C. 20500
April, 10 2007
Dear Mr. President:
We are writing on behalf of the U.S.- Western Sahara Foundation, a bipartisan foundation of American citizens from all walks to life, to urge your administration to uphold the right to self-determination for the Sahrawi people of Western Sahara, the only colony in Africa yet to be decolonized.
The Sahrawi people represent everything you are striving to achieve in the Middle East and in your outreach to the Muslim community: They are a Muslim people who believe in the rule of law, democracy, human rights, equal rights for women, and religious tolerance. In fact, the Sahrawi people in occupied Western Sahara, are regularly beaten, tortured and jailed for peacefully demonstrating for the right to vote. In fact, because of Morocco’s brutal treatment of the Sahrawis, Moroccan-occupied Western Sahara is continually ranked by Freedom House as one of the most repressive regimes in the world.
While we appreciate the historic and long-time friendship between the United States and Morocco, we cannot have credibility if we fail to uphold and stand up for the very principles for which our nation was founded: self-determination. The Moroccans, rather than allowing the long-promised United Nation-backed referendum on self-determination to be held, have worked aggressively to thwart MINURSO and are now proposing an autonomy plan which is in violation of international law.
As Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice boldly stated: “the fear of free choices can no longer justify the denial of liberty. It is time to abandon the excuses that are made to avoid the hard work of democracy."
It’s time for our country to demand that Morocco end its brutal occupation of Western Sahara and allow the long-promised vote on self-determination to be held.
Had past United States administrations stood up for freedom and human rights as your administration is doing, we would have long ago seen the Sahrawi people fulfill their dream of a pro-West, Muslim democracy, something we are spending much blood, treasure and toil to try to accomplish in Iraq.
Please stand up for Muslim democracy and self-determination and back a free, fair and transparent referendum for the Sahrawi people.
Suzanne Scholte Carlos Wilson
U.S. Western Sahara Foundation U.S. Western Sahara Foundation