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Laayoune // History of the town

Laayoune was established on the left bank of oued Saguia El hamra in 1937, in an area called Ayoune El Medelchi(smooth water spring) 25 km of the Atlantic ocean.


At the time of its foundation, this town was a military barracks space, during the fifties it became a town of colonization and services intended to Spanish military families.


During the ECOUVILLON military operation (Spanish and French military operation aiming at crushing the liberation army of the Sahara) a number of sahraoui nomads settled in the town. This settlement, in big numbers, of local inhabitants was not accompanied by a development of the infrastructure, and appropriate social services leading to modernise life.


At the end of the sixties, the town was divided into two parts: the modern town for settlers, and the town for native population missing everything, and living at the edge of the modernity.


At the beginning of the seventies the Spanish authorities have started a timid process of social development, which lasted for a short period, as it coincided with the end of the Spanish presence, and the return of the town to the homeland


At the beginning of 1976, and up to now, Laayoun knows an unprecedented development which changed it completely and transformed the town and its population.


Today Laayoune has nothing to do with the small town of is a modern town, full of life, economic, social and cultural activities.



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