UN Mission for the Referendum In Western Sahara (MINURSO)

The official description, eligibility, criteria, and history of the UN Mission for the Referendum In Western Sahara (MINURSO).

UN Mission for the Referendum In Western Sahara (MINURSO)

UN Mission for the Referendum In Western Sahara (MINURSO)


This mission was established to hold a referendum for determining the future of the region and to provide movement control. The major issue was to decide if the people of the Western Sahara wanted independence from or integration with Morocco. Following the election, the mandate was to monitor the cease-fire.

Eligibility and criteria

Awarded for 90 days consecutive service between 29 April 1991 to 29 June 1994.

The UN strictly applies their medals policy and will not consider requests for initial issue of the UN medals that are submitted more than one year after repatriation from the mission area.

The qualifying service is not required for members killed or presumed killed while on assignment. In such cases, the medal may be awarded posthumously.


A circular bronze alloy medal, 1.4 inches (35mm) in diameter:

On the obverse, the representation of the UN symbol surmounted by the straight letters UN, both in bas-relief.

On the reverse, an inscription bearing the words "IN THE SERVICE OF PEACE" in English (and only in English).

A 0.5 inch (12mm) bronze ring, which holds the ribbon, passes through a small hollow ball at the top of a claw joined to the top of the medal.

The ribbon has a very wide central band of a sandy brown colour, representing the Sahara Desert, with two narrow bands of UN blue at either end.


There is no bar to this medal.


The medal shall be worn in sequence prescribed in the Canadian Orders, Decorations and Medals Directive, and in the following manner:

  • on the left breast, suspended from the ribbon described above, after the UNAVEM medal and before the ONUSAL medal.


The use of a post-nominal is not authorized for this medal.

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