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Date of posting : September 22, 2020

Geneva: Untruths About Moroccan Sahara Exposed Before HRC

The Moroccan delegation to the 45th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva on Tuesday exposed the untruths and fallacious theses advanced by a group hostile to the territorial integrity of the Kingdom, whose members are themselves pinned and blamed for abuses and serious violations in the field of human rights.

In a right of reply, Morocco’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Office at Geneva, ambassador Omar Zniber, exposed, with supporting evidence, the lies and biased interpretations contained in the statement made by Timor-Leste, on behalf of a small group hostile to the Kingdom.

“Contrary to the assertions of the said statement, the principle of self-determination as set out in General Assembly Resolution 1514 of 1960 is fundamentally linked to the principle of territorial integrity, which is the basis of the Kingdom of Morocco’s position regarding the recovery and preservation of its southern provinces,” Zniber noted.

He stated in this sense that “the way in which this small group today invoked General Assembly resolution 1514 is a lack of knowledge of the history of Morocco and the fighting led by its population from the north of its provinces to those of the south. The latter, have campaigned for the independence of Morocco throughout the colonial period, and live fully their Moroccanness by enjoying all rights guaranteed throughout the national territory”.

He noted, furthermore, “that among the majority of the countries in this small group are those that benefited from Morocco’s military, political and diplomatic support for their liberation, in particular Algeria, South Africa, Namibia and Angola”.

The ambassador invited, in this regard, “the members of this group to read carefully and scrupulously the history of my country before proclaiming, contradictorily, that they respect its territorial integrity”.

Zniber also recalled that the issue of Moroccan Sahara was included in the UN, as early as 1963, at the initiative of Morocco, as part of the completion of its territorial integrity, while the separatist entity did not even exist.

“We are therefore before a truncated and fallacious reading of the elements of International Law, in favor of a separatist movement manipulated for more than 40 years against Morocco by its opponents, particularly Algeria,” he underlined.

Algeria which, as everyone knows, despite its denials, participates, as a concerned party, in the round-table discussions on the Sahara, at the request of the Security Council, which attributes to it, on behalf of the International Community, a special responsibility in the genesis of the conflict, as well as for its settlement, recalled the ambassador.

Regarding the false accusations concerning the situation of human rights and the consequences of Covid-19 in the Kingdom, particularly in the southern provinces, Zniber said he had “already had the opportunity, before this august assembly, to detail the rights and freedoms enjoyed by the population in these provinces, as also noted by several international observers, journalists, official delegations, who visit these provinces on a continuous basis”.

“Indeed, he went on, Morocco’s efforts to strengthen the promotion and effective protection of human rights also continue in the two regions of the Moroccan Sahara, which are governed by the same provisions of the national legislative and institutional framework, and are fully integrated, in all serenity and without distinction, in the dynamics of development and enjoyment by citizens of their rights throughout the territory of the Kingdom”.