Where is Western Sahara?

Located in Northern Africa, Western Sahara has a 2,049.00 km border with Algeria (41 km), Mauritania (1,564 km) and Morocco (444 km). It has a 1,110.00 km coastline. Many neighboring states reject the Moroccan administration of Western Sahara.

Western Sahara is a disputed territory in Africa, with Morocco claiming ownership and the Polisario Front claiming as the independent Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR). Some countries around the world do recognize the SADR as an independent nation. Recently, in 2011, the ruling forces here decided to move the administrative capital to Tafariti. The location of this city is between the Sahrawi refugee camps and an important religious site, known as Smara, in the northeastern region of the country. It lies just 9 miles north of the border with Mauritania. The population of this city is believed to be around 3,000 individuals. The entire Western Sahara region has only around 30,000 residents. Because of the harsh desert conditions and political instability of Western Sahara, Tifariti is not a popular or common tourist destination. It houses only some very basic administrative buildings, like a school, hospital, and military headquarters. The climate here experiences extremely hot and arid conditions that make it difficult for vegetation to thrive. The two hottest months are in July and August, while the two coldest months are in December and January.

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Western Sahara is an African country covering 266,000.00 km2. and about the size of Colorado. Its geographic coordinates are 24 30 N, 13 00 W and El-Aaiun is the capital city.

It is named for its location in the desert.

Its ISO code is EH.

Its constitution was last ratified in 1999.


Western Sahara has a mean elevation of 256 m above sea level.

The climate is arid, although it is temperate in the mountainous regions and hot and humid along the west coast. Its terrain is mostly low, with flat deserts and small mountains.


Western Sahara has a population of 587,020 making it the 169th largest in the world. The majority of the population resides in Laayoune.

Standard Arabic is the national language. The most common ethnic groups are Arab and Berber. The majority of the population identifies as Muslim.

Western Sahara, a disputed territory, is controlled by Morocco and the Polisario Front. The Polisario Front has claimed its controlled area to be an independent nation, known as Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. In the Moroccan controlled areas of Western Sahara, Standard Arabic and Berber are considered the official languages. In the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), however, Spanish and Standard Arabic are the official languages. Although Spanish, Standard Arabic, and Berber are the official languages throughout Western Sahara, they are not the most widely spoken. This distinction is often assigned to Moroccan Arabic, which is believed to be used as the daily spoken language by the majority of the population here. It is, therefore, recommended to learn some phrases in this language if planning to visit Western Sahara. Additionally, Hassaniya Arabic is sometimes considered the national language of the area.

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The dialing code for the country is 212.

The disputed territory of Western Sahara is currently under the control of the government of Morocco and the Polisario Front political group. The regions under Morrocan rule are governed by a parliamentary monarchy, which means the country is lead by a royal family member. The regions under the Polisario Front are known as the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, which is considered an independent nation by many countries. This government is lead by a President, who acts as Head of State. The citizens of both regions participate in the elections of their corresponding governments.

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Factoring in Purchasing Power Parity, Western Sahara's GDP is $906,500,000.00 (USD) with $2,500.00 (USD) per capita. This makes it the 203rd largest economy and its citizens the 190th richest in the world. The currency of Western Sahara is the Dirham (MAD).

Its major imports include fuel for fishing fleet, and foodstuffs.


Western Sahara is a territory in northern Africa. its ownership is currently under dispute between Morocco and the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. The flag of Western Sahara, as a territory of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, was officially adopted in February of 1976. Because of the territorial dispute, however, Morocco refuses to recognize the validity of this flag and instead uses its national flag to represent the region. The flag of Western Sahara is a black, white, and green horizontal tricolor with a red triangle along the left side. The tip of the triangle points toward the center of the flag. Additionally, a red crescent moon and a 5-pointed star are situated at the center of the white colored band. Each of the colors and symbols on this flag have a special meaning to Western Sahara. Primarily, the flag is recognized as a representation of the Pan-Arab movement, a political ideology aimed at bring Arab nations together in a sense of nationalism.

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This page was last modified on January 17th, 2018

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