Wednesday, March 20th | 13 Adar II 5779

February 3, 2016 7:12 am

US Customs Has No Labeling Requirements for Western Sahara

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Judea and Samaria. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Judea and Samaria. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

In the wake of last week’s politically motivated “reminder notice” that goods from Jewish settlements cannot be labeled “Made in Israel,” Elder of Ziyon reader Irene emailed the US Customs and Border Protection and asked them a simple question: are there any rules that goods from Moroccan-occupied Western Sahara be labeled as such, or are they labeled with Morocco as their country of origin?

The answer:

Thank you for your outreach. Currently, I’m not aware of any C/O marking requirements from Western Sahara.

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Randy Mitchell
(Acting) Director, Commercial Operations and Entry Division
Trade Policy and Programs, Office of International Trade
1400 L Street NW 4th Floor, Washington DC

In fact, the official State Department policy towards Western Sahara is completely different from its policy towards Judea and Samaria:

The United States’ policy toward the Western Sahara has remained consistent for many years. The United States has made clear that Morocco’s autonomy plan is serious, realistic, and credible, and that it represents a potential approach that could satisfy the aspirations of the people in the Western Sahara to run their own affairs in peace and dignity.

Autonomy — sort of like what Palestinian Arabs enjoy today, which is considered by the UN’s Secretary General to be so oppressive that terror attacks are a natural reaction.

Moroccan settlements in Western Sahara — whose population now exceeds that of the indigenous Sahwari people — are not considered a problem at all. The Geneva Conventions that everyone cites regarding Jews moving voluntarily to their historic lands do not seem to apply to Morocco moving hundreds of thousands of people to occupied territory.

Can you say “double standards?”

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