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Morocco eyes boycott of Swedish companies over disputed Western Sahara

Staff writer |
Morocco is considering a boycott of Swedish companies operating in the North African kingdom because of Sweden's position on a dispute over Western Sahara.

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Morocco has controlled most of territory since 1975 and claims the sparsely populated stretch of desert, which has offshore fishing, phosphate reserves and oilfield potential, as its own.

The government said Sweden has been campaigning to boycott products from Western Sahara and from international companies with a presence there.

"We are heading toward a boycott of Swedish companies according the principle of reciprocity after similar campaigns to boycott Moroccan companies," a statement issued after the weekly cabinet meeting said.

Sweden and other Scandinavian countries have backed Western Saharan self-determination, while France and Spain have been accused by activists and human rights organisations of supporting the Moroccan line.

Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs Margot Wallstrom said Sweden's entire policy on Western Sahara is the subject of an internal review.

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