Rabat - Morocco’s security operations in Guerguerat and MINURSO’s return to “full functionality” were discussed at the UN Security Council meeting on Friday.
Rabat – Morocco’s security operations in Guerguerat and MINURSO’s return to “full functionality” were discussed at the UN Security Council meeting on Friday.
Both have become pressing issues for the Polisario Front, a separatist group, which protested to the United Nation that Morocco had “violated” the ceasefire agreement by moving armed security forces along the border of Mauritania.
“The Security Council is continuing consultations on the return to functionality of MINURSO and on ongoing operations Guerguerat, said Ramlan Bin Ibrahim, the representative of Malaysia and President of the Security Council for the month of August.
Morocco’s Interior Ministry confirmed that on August 14 it had sent police forces were sent to Guerguerat to carry out operations to stop smugglers and terrorists who had used the region as a haven for nefarious deeds.
Brahim Ghali, the new head of the Polisaro Front, complained to the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a letter which accused Morocco of “violating” the ceasefire agreement which was set in 1991. The UN Mission, MINURSO, has as its mandate to maintain neutrality and ensure that both sides of the conflict abide by the ceasefire agreement.
An investigation by MINURSO reported that it found no sign of any suspicious military activity nor breach of territory on the part of Morocco.
“The mission observed what were assessed as civilian vehicles moving across the berm but was not able to determine additional information,” said Farhan Haq, UN Deputy Spokesman at a press conference in New York.
Venezuela, which is a prime supporter of the Polisario, put both issues on the agenda of the Security Council on behalf of the Polisario Front.
The separatist group and its supporters were hoping to secure resolution condemning the Moroccan operation to stop contraband from crossing the Guerguerat region, according to Le360.
The “full-functionality” of MINURSO has become an issue since the Moroccan government expelled 84 international civil servants from the region earlier this year.
Morocco’s action came after Ban ki-moon made a diplomatic gaffe in calling Morocco’s presence in the region an “occupation.”
Since then, the United Nations voted to continue the peacekeeping mission. Last month, Morocco allowed 25 MINURO’s civil servants to return to their work station.