Rabat - Fourteen members of the Polisario Front entered Al Mahbes, a restricted area close to the Algerian border in northeastern Western Sahara, on Thursday.
Rabat – Fourteen members of the Polisario Front entered Al Mahbes, a restricted area close to the Algerian border in northeastern Western Sahara, on Thursday.
A security source told Moroccan news outlet Le360 that “fourteen elements of the Polisario front raided, this Thursday evening, between 10:10 p.m. and 19:00 p.m, the locality of Mhabes, aboard four Jeep military vehicles.”
The source added that the armed elements have installed several tents in the locality of the Moroccan province of Assa Zag, an area which is restricted by the UN 1991 ceasefire resolution.
The separatist group has been defying the United Nations’ 2351 resolution on the regulation of the statues of the Western Sahara buffer zones since December 2017. The front has also been threatening to move its “defense headquarters” to the restricted buffer zone of Bir Lahlou. The sources claimed that the process of relocating the separatists’ headquarters to Bir Lahlou “has started and will be completed within a short period.” The news was widely reported by Moroccan press yesterday.
Polisario’s maneuvers are underway in a time when the United Nations is preparing its annual report on the Western Sahara question. Observers argue that this provocative actions will hinder the settlement process, a situation which raised concerns in the UN Security Council in a meeting held on March 22, in the presence of the UN Personal Envoy Horst Kohler.
On March 21 in New York, the Security Council expressed its concern about the situation in the buffer zone of Guerguerat, stressing the importance of maintaining the status quo. The council’s president, Karel van Oosterom, condemned the provocative actions of Polisario, emphasizing that “there should be no change in the status of the buffer zone.”
The UN official stressed that the Security Council has also underscored the need for the “full implementation of resolution 2351