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Date of posting : August 27, 2018

UNSG’s Report to General Assembly Recalls Fundamentals of Morocco’s Position on Sahara Issue

The United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, has submitted his annual report on the Moroccan Sahara issue to the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly, in which he dedicates a long passage to excerpts of the speech delivered by HM King Mohammed VI on November 6, 2017, on the occasion of the 42nd anniversary of the Glorious Green March.

The Secretary-General said in this regard that the Sovereign emphasized that “Morocco remains committed to working within the political process, adhering to the current momentum that the Secretary General has sought, and to cooperating with the Personal Envoy”.

This commitment, as stated by the Sovereign, and as reflected in the report of the Secretary General, is based on the Kingdom’s fundamentals concerning the Sahara issue, including the rejection of any solution other than within the framework of Morocco’s full sovereignty over its Sahara and the Autonomy Initiative, the need for all the parties to fully shoulder their responsibility in order to reach a final solution to this regional dispute, respect for the Security Council as it is the only international body tasked with overseeing the settlement process and the rejection of any obsolete proposal designed to divert the settlement process from the set terms of reference.

The report highlights the Kingdom’s commitment to carry on the socio-economic development of its Southern Provinces, as emphasized in the Royal Speech : “we will not sit by and wait for the desired solution to be found. Instead, we will press ahead with our endeavors to promote development in our southern regions and offer our populations there freedom and dignity.”

The UN Secretary General highlighted the calm that prevailed in the Moroccan Sahara during the period covered by this report.

The report goes back to the first regional tour of the UN Secretary General’s Personal Envoy, Horst Köhler, conducted in October 2017. It recalls that the Moroccan authorities reiterated Morocco’s support for the efforts of the Personal Envoy, reaffirmed that Morocco remains “determined to find a political solution to the conflict, which is based on the Moroccan Autonomy Initiative of 2007” and stressed the need that “Algeria should play a more important role in this regard”.

The report also mentioned Köhler’s second visit to the region in last June, during which he visited Rabat and Morocco’s Southern Provinces.

Similarly, the report refers to the adoption, on 27 April 2018, by the Security Council of Resolution 2414, in which the Council stresses “the need to make progress toward a realistic, practicable and enduring political solution based on compromise”.

The resolution also encouraged neighboring countries, mainly Algeria, to make contributions to the political process.

The Secretary General’s report reaffirms, once again, that the obsolete, outdated and unrealistic plans and proposals supported by the other parties are no longer possible. Indeed, the Secretary General makes an exclusive reference to the Security Council resolutions adopted since 2007, as the basis of the current political process.