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Western Sahara Flag

Flag of Western Sahara
Flag Name(s) [Flag Of Western Sahara]
Aspect Ratio(1:2)
Color Scheme red,black,white,green
Color and Design

A black, white, and green horizontal tricolor charged with a red star and crescent in the center stripe and a red chevron at the hoist.

Meaning & SymbolismThe red triangle symbolizes progressive politics and the state's revolutionary heritage. A red star and crescent is a symbol of Islam, the majority religion in the country. The flag's colors are ultimately derived from the flag of the Arab Revolt, which makes the flag a strong symbol of Arab identity and independence from foreign rule. The colors also have symbolic meaning of their own. The black stripe represents death, the white stripe represents peace, and the green stripe represents life.
Description and Brief History

The flag of Western Sahara, also known as Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic uses a national flag consisting of a black, white and green horizontal tricolor charged with a red star and crescent in the center stripe and a red chevron at the hoist. It is used on Polisario-controlled areas, while the Moroccan flag is used on the rest of the occupied territory.

The flag is a combination of the Pan-Arab colors of black, green, white, and red, and the Islamic symbol of the star and crescent. On 27 February 1976 the flag was adopted as the official flag of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR). It was slightly modified in June 1991. It is said to have been designed by El Uali Mustapha Sayed, the first president of the SADR.

The flag is extremely similar to the flags of the Baath Party, Jordan, Palestine, and the Arab Federation all of which draw their inspiration from the Arab Revolt against Ottoman rule (1916–1918). Its design is based on that of the Palestinian flag, which in turn was derived from the colors used in the Arab Revolt.

In the late 19th-century, Western Sahara became a Spanish colony. During the Spanish province of Sahara, the only official flag was the flag of Spain, however, the maritime province of Villa Cisneros, which corresponds to the current territory of Western Sahara, was assigned a cornet flag that consisted of two stripes, blue the upper and yellow the lower. Like other demarcations of Spain, such as Cantabria, which created their symbols taking as references the flags of their maritime provinces, the Saharawi National Union Party created its flag based on that of the Maritime Province of Villa Cisneros, until its entry into the Polisario Front in a meeting held on October 12, 1975 with the leadership of said movement.

After the Madrid Accords of 1975, Spain disengaged itself leaving the territory to Morocco and Mauritania, who split the territory, giving two thirds to the former. The Polisario Front rejected this and declared in exile, the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR) as the state representing an "independent" Western Sahara. In 1979, Mauritania signed a peace treaty with the Polisario Front, and Morocco annexed the part formerly controlled by Mauritania. A U.N.-brokered ceasefire was signed in 1991 between the two parties, but the sovereignty of the territory remains unresolved pending ongoing peace-talks.


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