Saturday, February 28, 2009

Western Sahara

Photo: © Nacho Hernandez

I recently spent a week traveling in the Western Sahara (in the part not occupied by Morocco), taking photos for my ongoing project on the Sahrawi people. During this trip I had a taste of the "desert hospitality" and the confirmation that the Sahrawi are some of the friendliest people on earth.

The Sahrawi are the descendants of the "Children of the Clouds", desert nomads who in the past would roam the Sahara with their herds, following clouds laden with rain. For over thirty years now they have been chasing an equally elusive goal: independence for their homeland, first a Spanish colony and since 1975 occupied by Morocco. Some 150,000 Sahrawi live in the bleak refugee camps near the Algerian border town of Tinduf. Others live under Moroccan control in the Western Sahara, and some still live as nomads in the part of the Western Sahara not controlled by Morocco. They are all waiting for the UN-sanctioned referendum on independence to take place, a referendum stalled by Morocco.

You can see a gallery of photos from the Western Sahara and the Tindouf refugee camps in my website. More photos of the Sahrawi refugee camps and from the Western Sahara available in my archive.

Photos and texts available for publication. Please send me an email if interested.


  1. I love the photo, you've captured the mood, atmosphere so well. You can just about step into it.