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Declaration |1| of principles on Western Sahara by Spain, Morocco and Mauritania

On 14 November 1975, the delegations lawfully representing the Governments of Spain, Morocco and Mauritania, meeting in Madrid, stated that they had agreed in order on the following principles:

1. Spain confirms its resolve, repeatedly stated in the United Nations, to decolonize the Territory of Western Sahara by terminating the responsibilities and powers which it possesses over that Territory as administering Power.

2. In conformity with the aforementioned determination and in accordance with the negotiations advocated by the United Nations with the affected parties, Spain will proceed forthwith to institute a temporary administration in the Territory, in which Morocco and Mauritania will participate in collaboration with the Yema'a and to which will be transferred all the responsibilities and powers referred to in the preceding paragraph. It is accordingly agreed that two Deputy Governors nominated by Morocco and Mauritania shall be appointed to assist the Governor-General of the Territory in the performance of his functions. The termination of the Spanish presence in the Territory will be completed by 28 February 1976 at the latest.

3. The views of the Saharan population, expressed through the Yema'a, will be respected.

4. The three countries will inform the Secretary-General of the United Nations of the terms set down in this instrument as a result of the negotiations entered into in accordance with Article 33 of the Charter of the United Nations.

5. The three countries involved declare that they arrived at the foregoing conclusions in the highest spirit of understanding and brotherhood, with due respect for the principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and as the best possible contribution to the maintenance of international peace and security.

6. This instrument shall enter into force on the date of publication in the Boletín Oficial (Official Gazette) of the State of the "Sahara Decolonization Act" authorizing the Spanish Government to assume the commitments conditionally set forth in this instrument.

[Carlos Arias Navarro]
[Ahmed Osman]
[Hamdi Mouknass]

[Source: United Nations Treaty Series, Vol. 988, No. I-14450, p. 259, New York, 1983]


1. Came into force on 19 November 1975, the date of the publication in the Spanish Official Gazette of the Act authorizing the Government of Spain to implement its provisions, in accordance with paragraph 6. [Back]

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