Moroccan Sahara is a Matter of Territorial Integrity for the Kingdom
Morocco has reaffirmed before the United Nations that the issue of the Moroccan Sahara is a matter of territorial integrity and national sovereignty for the Kingdom.
“First of all, I would like to reaffirm that the issue of the Moroccan Sahara is a matter of territorial integrity and national sovereignty of my country,” said, Wednesday before the UN General Assembly’s (UNGA) Third Committee, Morocco’s representative in this meeting, Omar Kadiri, in response to the fallacious insinuations of Algeria on the question of the Moroccan Sahara.
The Moroccan diplomat recalled that the Kingdom has irretrievably recovered its Sahara through the Madrid Agreement, recognized by the UN, which took note of it in its resolution 3458B of December 10, 1975.
In exercise of the right of reply following Algeria’s statement during the Committee’s debate, Kadiri regretted that the delegation of this country “once again, indulged in the provocation, the untruths and the fixation on the issue of the Moroccan Sahara,” stressing that seemingly, irresponsible and unfounded statements have become the norm of Algerian diplomacy.
He pointed out that the creation and maintenance by Algeria of the dispute over the Sahara have for sole and unique reasons the hostility and aggressiveness of this country against its neighbor Morocco, its persistence in attempting to undermine Morocco’s territorial integrity, as well as its strategy to divert its own population from claiming the legitimate rights of which it is deprived on a daily basis.
Algeria’s responsibility in the regional dispute over the Moroccan Sahara is clearly established, he said, recalling that this country has, among other things, sponsored the creation of a separatist movement and is spending huge financial resources to support it militarily and diplomatically and that it submitted, on November 2, 2001 in Houston, to the personal envoy of then-secretary-general, James Baker, a proposal for the division of the territory of the Moroccan Sahara and its population, ignoring the right to self-determination which it claims to defend. A proposal that was firmly rejected by Morocco.
Kadiri also recalled that Algeria has always acted as a party to this dispute and officially reacted to all the proposals made by both the secretary-general and his personal envoys, as well as by Morocco.
To end, once and for all, this artificial dispute over its Sahara, created by Algeria, Morocco has joined in good faith the UN process to reach a political solution, noted the Moroccan diplomat, adding that the Security Council has also reiterated and reaffirmed in its 12 resolutions since 2007, the fundamental and unique parameters for the resolution of this dispute.
In this regard, Kadiri highlighted the pre-eminence of the Moroccan autonomy initiative, considered as the serious and credible foundation to put an end to this dispute.
These parameters also concern the request to the parties and States of the region to cooperate more fully with the United Nations and with each other to make progress towards a political solution. Neighboring countries, mainly Algeria, should make important contributions to the process, he added.
The Moroccan diplomat noted that the new personal envoy of the secretary-general for the Sahara, Horst Köhler, has just finalized his first tour in the region, during which he paid a successful visit to Morocco.
He also said that the referendum, of which Algeria is speaking, is dead and was buried by the UN secretary-general and the Security Council more than 18 years ago.
Regarding human rights, Kadiri pointed out that the situation in Morocco, according to numerous international organizations, is much better than in Algeria.
Moreover, the Security Council commended the recent measures and initiatives taken by Morocco, the role played by the commissions of the National Council for Human Rights in Dakhla and Laayoune as well as interaction between the Kingdom and relevant United Nations human rights mechanisms and procedures, he noted.
Kadiri also recalled the disastrous situation of the population held against its will in the Tindouf camps that is deprived of its most basic rights.
On the other hand, the Moroccan official drew the Committee’s attention to “the dire situation of migrants from African brotherly countries living in Algeria”.
The Algerian authorities, he said, launched a discriminatory crackdown against third-country nationals, and arrested and forcibly expelled over 2,000 migrants from various countries in sub-Saharan Africa to neighboring states in the past three weeks.