Staffan de Mistura expected in Morocco this weekend

The Personal Envoy of the UN Secretary General for the Sahara, Staffan de Mistura, will fly to Rabat on Saturday, as part of the relaunch of the round table process to put an end to the dispute over the Sahara. He will not go to Algeria this time.

Faced with the latest developments in the case, Staffan de Mistura, goes online to relaunch the talks between the 4 main parties to the dispute, namely Morocco, Algeria and to a lesser extent, Mauritania and the militia of polisario.

This will be the second such meeting between Moroccan officials and the personal envoy of Antonio Guterres. The first was organized in January as part of a regional tour, but this one is special since it concerns only Morocco.

Staffan de Mistura was due to make a second regional tour last May. It had been announced in April, but for health reasons, in particular because of the covid, it was canceled.

If this trip concerns only Morocco, it is because the task promises to be rather difficult when it comes to Algeria, since the country broke off diplomatic relations with the kingdom last August. Subsequently, the country announced in October that it no longer wanted to be part of the round table process and rejected the latest Security Council resolution, which reaffirmed that Algiers was indeed a party to the conflict and that all parties should participate in the round table format chosen by the UN.

Algeria, which stands alone against the international community in this matter, also reinforced its isolation from the international scene, by announcing the end of the Treaty of Friendship and Good Neighborliness with Spain, a former colonial power in the Moroccan Sahara, after that Madrid supported the autonomy proposal submitted by Morocco as a solution to the dispute.

Staffan de Mistura, will therefore meet with Moroccan officials, will make a stopover in the capital Rabat on Saturday and will also have to go to Lâayoune, the southern city, to relaunch the political negotiation process for a solution to the dispute.

The next step for the UN envoy will be to make the Algerian regime resonate to get back to the negotiating table, and no longer block the process of settling this file, which has been dragging on for too long.

In recent years, the Sahara issue has experienced several twists and turns that bode well for a near end, with a political solution acceptable to all and based on compromise. The international community has approved and supported the extended autonomy proposal that Morocco submitted in 2007.

In addition, a large section of the international community considers that there is no doubt about the Moroccan nature of the Sahara territory and supports Rabat in its position. Several countries have thus inaugurated consulates in the southern Moroccan provinces.

Moreover, certain states which had been seduced for a time in the 1970s by the false ideas propagated by the Algerian regime and its creation, the polisario militia, and had recognized the self-proclaimed Sahrawi republic (not recognized by the UN, Ed. ), withdrew their recognition from this fictitious entity after discovering Algiers’ motives in the region.

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