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Frente POLISARIO representative in New York sends a letter to the President of the Security Council.

H.E. Mr Gustavo Meza-Cuadra
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Peru to the United Nations
President of the Security Council of the United Nations

New York, 2 April 2018
Excellency,

On behalf of the Frente POLISARIO, the legitimate representative of the people of Western Sahara, I am writing to you in your capacity as the President of the UN Security Council to place on record the following:

1.         The Frente POLISARIO refutes categorially all the utterly unfounded and false allegations made by Morocco’s representative to the UN regarding the terms of the UN-supervised ceasefire and the related military agreement no. 1 in Western Sahara as well as the current situation on the ground in the Territory.

2.         The terms of the ceasefire of 1991 and the military agreement no. 1 of 1997, accepted by both parties the Frente POLISARIO and Morocco, are unequivocal and leave no room for tendentious interpretations. Furthermore, the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) is present on the ground in Western Sahara. Its mandate as established by the Security Council involves, inter alia, monitoring and reporting on the situation regarding the ceasefire and the related military agreement no. 1. MINURSO has not reported any violations by the Frente POLISARIO of such a nature as alleged falsely by Morocco, a fact that already puts into question the latter’s allegations and exposes its ulterior motives.

3.         Despite the repeated delays of the self-determination referendum for which MINURSO was established as well as Morocco’s well-documented obstructionism and blatant defiance of UN authority and Security Council resolutions, for the past 27 years the Frente POLISARIO has been firmly committed to the cause of peace as a strategic policy option. It has strictly respected the terms of the ceasefire and the related military agreement no. 1, and has constructively engaged in the UN peace process aimed to bring about a peaceful and just solution providing for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara.

4.         It is well known that it was Morocco that had sought to change the status quo by constructing a road across its military wall and the buffer zone in Guerguerat area in Western Sahara. The dangerous and provocative move, to which the Frente POLISARIO had to respond at the time, was a clear breach of the ceasefire agreement and the related military agreement no. 1, and it remains the root cause of the current tension in the area. 

5.         It is also well known that Morocco has rejected the deployment of a UN technical mission as proposed by the UN Secretary-General to address the fundamental questions related to the ceasefire and related agreements in response to the call made by the Security Council in its resolution 2351 (2017), operative paragraph 3. The Frente POLISARIO, which has already accepted the deployment of the UN technical mission, calls on the Security Council to ensure the immediate implementation of its resolution 2351 (2017) in its entirety. The Frente POLISARIO also recalls that the current presence of some of its members in the Guerguerat area is strictly civilian and non-military.  

6.         The escalation of Morocco’s aggressive actions and rhetoric, in which the perpetrator presents itself as the victim, comes at a time when the Security Council is due to consider the situation concerning Western Sahara. It also takes place against the backdrop of the strongly expressed intention of the UN Secretary-General and his Personal Envoy for Western Sahara, Mr Horst Köhler, to relaunch the negotiating process between the two parties as called for by Security Council resolutions. Apprehensive about the outcome of the negotiations, Morocco has already been searching for excuses to disengage from the UN peace process and its concomitant commitments.

7.         Morocco’s escalation is also due to the setbacks that it has suffered recently at the hands of the European Court of Justice that ruled against its illegal plunder of the natural resources of Western Sahara. The strong position expressed by the African Union in its latest summit as regards the urgent need for direct negotiations between the two parties to the conflict in Western Sahara has also dealt a major blow to Morocco’s attempts to neutralise Africa’s great contribution to peace efforts in its last colony. 

8.         Morocco’s unfounded and false allegations regarding the UN-supervised ceasefire and the current situation on the ground in Western Sahara, therefore, are not more than a smokescreen designed deliberately to divert the attention of the Security Council from the real issues that underlie the current stalemate. It is also a pre-emptive move to forestall the outcome of the dynamic efforts deployed so far by the UN Secretary-General’s Personal Envoy for Western Sahara, Mr Köhler, with a view to relaunching the political process and bringing the two parties back to the negotiating table.

9.         Recognising its inability to impose by military force its colonial fait accompli in the whole territory of Western Sahara and recently to change the status quo, Morocco is desperately reaching out to the Security Council to ask for the impossible, namely the illegal annexation of a Non-Self-Governing Territory under the responsibility of the United Nations and over which Morocco has never had any sovereignty.

10.       Morocco’s recent moves clearly represent another episode of its blackmail policy and defiant behaviour, which unfortunately was not met by the necessary and robust response from the Security Council. This includes, among other things, its opposition to human rights monitoring within MINURSO mandate, expelling of the mission civilian component, trying to change the status quo in the Guerguerat area, imposing that MINURSO vehicles bear Moroccan number plates, affixing stamps on the passports of MINURSO staff members upon entry to and exit from Western Sahara, and repeatedly defying the authority of MINURSO in its mission area.  

11.       The Frente POLISARIO therefore calls urgently on the Security Council to ensure that such diversionary tactics do not distract it from the real issues that must be addressed for the negotiating process between the two parties to advance towards its ultimate objective, namely a peaceful and just solution providing for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara. The Frente POLISARIO also calls on the Security Council to use its authority to urge Morocco to engage seriously and constructively in the political process, to respect strictly the terms of the ceasefire and the military agreement no. 1, and to desist from taking any action that may increase tension in the region and threaten its stability and security.  

12.       The Frente POLISARIO would like to reiterate to the Security Council, the UN Secretary-General, and his Personal Envoy for Western Sahara its firm commitment to the terms of the ceasefire and the related military agreement no. 1. The Frente POLISARIO also remains strongly committed to direct negotiations without preconditions under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General and his Personal Envoy for Western Sahara with a view to reaching a peaceful and just solution that provides for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara.

I would be most grateful if you would bring this letter to the attention of the Members of the Security Council.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.

Ahmed Boukhari
Representative of the Frente POLISARIO to the United Nations

بقلم : مركز بنتيلي الإعلامي

بقلم : مركز بنتيلي الاعلامي

مـــــركــــز بــنــتــــيــــلــــــي الإعـــلامــــــي .

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