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Lobbying 2015: Morocco courts US backing in Sahara dispute

Morocco is spending upwards of $3 million a year to convince US politicians – including presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton – to back its claims over the disputed Western Sahara. So far, it’s working.

Morocco's massive lobbying blitz is paying hefty dividends as Congress and Barack Obama's administration increasingly side with the US ally in its claims over the disputed Western Sahara.

The North African kingdom spent $3.1 million last year building support for its exploitation of the resource-rich territory it has occupied since 1975 and claims as its own. While officially the United States still supports a long-delayed referendum on independence — it backed another extension of the UN monitoring mission in April — key policymakers are embracing the status quo.

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