The Polisario urges French insurer COFACE to stop its activities in the Sahara

After filing complaints against seven big French companies, the Polisario called on credit insurer COFACE to stop its activities in the Sahara.

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French insurer COFACE./Ph/. DR

In a statement made public on its official «news agency» SPS, the Polisario Front called on the French insurance company for foreign trade COFACE to «stop all activities» in the Sahara.

The Front urged the credit insurer, which offers companies solutions to protect them against the risk of financial default of their clients, both in their domestic and export market, to «uphold the decisions of the Court of Justice of the European Union banning all economic activity without the consent of Western Sahara people».

The Polisario did not stop there, but sent, according to the same source, through a bailiff, a summons on October the 31st to the French company. «The French insurance company should fully abide by the CJEU’s decisions of 21December 2016 and 27 February 2018», said M’hamed Khaddad, the Front’s «Foreign Relations Committee».

«COFACE continues to flout the decisions of the CJUE as its official website shows a map of Morocco ‘illegally' including Western Sahara territory, which the French government itself has not done on the website of the ministry of Foreign Affairs», indicated the Front in its statement published on Sunday.

«We have given the company 15 days to respond favorably to our call, if it refuses, we will file a complaint against it», the Polisario’s lawyer Gilles Devers told AFP in a phone call.

A campaign against French firms

It is not the first time that the Polisario warns French companies against their activities in the Sahara. In mid-October, the Front filed lawsuits against several big French companies, says Africa Intelligence.

lawyer Gilles Devers lodged, on October the 19th in Paris, complaints against BNP Paribas, Société Générale, AXA, Crédit Agricole, airline company Transavia, Franco-Dutch airline holding company France-KLM, and UCPA, a company that organizes surf competitions in Dakhla.

The decision was based on the two rulings pronounced by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in January 2016 and February 2017. The two verdicts exclude Western Sahara from the draft agreements signed with Morocco.

In September, the Front filed a lawsuit against French firm Chancerelle. A few months ago, the Polisario’s lawyer promised to act against European companies operating in the Sahara.

More recently, the Front targeted an Irish oil firm. Through the Irish organization GLAN, close to the Polisario, filed a complaint against San Leon Energy for «violating the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises», reported Western Sahara Resources Watch on October the 24th.

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