The East Timor Model Offers a Way out for Western Sahara and Morocco

Foreign Policy Dec. 9, 2020 – It’s not often that Western Sahara makes international headlines, but in mid November it did: Nov. 14 marked the tragic—if unsurprising—breakup of a tenuous, 29-year cease-fire in Western Sahara between the occupying Moroccan government and pro-independence fighters. The outbreak of violence is concerning not only because it flew in the face of nearly three decades of relative stasis, but also because Western governments’ reflexive response to the resurgent conflict may be to upend—and thereby hamper and de-legitimize for perpetuity over 75 years of established international legal principles. It is imperative that the global community realize the path forward lies in adhering to international law… [FULL LINK]

East Timor’s Tragedy and Triumph

East Timor is largely in ruins as a result of the Indonesian-led destruction and massacres of September 1999. Yet the East Timorese are finally free. That such carnage was allowed to take place is yet another indictment of U.S. foreign policy in Southeast Asia, yet the ultimate victory of the population of East Timor is a triumphant reflection of the power of ordinary people—in both East Timor and around the world—to triumph against enormous odds….

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