NEW YORK – UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday urged the Polisario Front and Morocco to commit "in good faith , without preconditions and in a constructive spirit "in the Geneva discussions, reaffirming its" unwavering support "to the efforts of the emissary, Horst Kohler, to revive the UN process in Western Sahara.
"The Secretary-General reiterates his unwavering support for his personal envoy and his efforts to restart the negotiation process, in accordance with Security Council resolution 2440 of 31 October 2018," said the spokesman. of the UN Secretary-General, Stéphane Dujarric in a statement issued on the eve of the round table organized by the UN in Geneva to relaunch the peace process in Western Sahara.
Guterres hailed the decision of the two parties to the conflict, the Polisario Front and Morocco, and that of the two neighboring countries, Algeria and Mauritania, to accept Horst Kohler's invitation to this first round table , planned over two days in the Swiss city. Algeria and Mauritania, invited by the former German President, will be present at this round table as neighbors and observers.
The last time the Polisario Front and Morocco settled at the same negotiating table was in March 2012 in Manhasset. Since then, the peace process has stalled due to Morocco's obstruction of the efforts of two UN envoys, James Baker and Christopher Ross.
At the end of last October, the Security Council urged Morocco and the Polisario Front to resume negotiations "without preconditions and in good faith" with a view to reaching a just, lasting and mutually acceptable political solution that would allow self-determination of the people of Western Sahara "
According to its resolution extending the mandate of the six-month UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (Minurso), the Security Council stressed the importance for both sides in the conflict of " to recommit itself to advancing the political process in view of a fifth round of negotiations ".
Registered since 1966 on the list of Non-Self-Governing Territories, eligible for the implementation of UN General Assembly Resolution 1514, bearing Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, the Sahara western is the last colony of Africa, occupied since 1975 by Morocco.