The Polisario is working to undermine Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara as the world races to address the global threat of COVID-19.
Rabat – The Polisario Front seeks to make the Western Sahara conflict a focal point at the UN Security Council video conference meeting this morning, April 9. The meeting’s primary purpose is to discuss peacekeeping operations and the COVID-19 situation.
On April 6, the news agency of the self-proclaimed SADR wrote that the breakaway group’s representative at the UN, Sidi Mohamed Omar, would like Security Council members to discuss several issues related to the regional conflict, including the “delay in the appointment of a new UN envoy and mechanisms for responding to the opening of consulates” in the Western Sahara region.
Horst Kohler, the former UNSC Personal Envoy, resigned in May 2019 due to health problems.
The UN Secretary General failed to appoint a new personal envoy, but pledged to continue an ongoing search for Kohler’s replacement.
While the rest of the world is racing to find solutions to the COVID-19 crisis, the Polisario Front is maneuvering against Morocco’s diplomatic gains. The breakaway group plans to move its protests to the Security Council meeting, against the precedent set by African countries who opened official diplomatic consulates in Morocco’s southern regions of Laayoune and Dakhla.
According to the Security Council’s program, members expect a briefing during the meeting on the UN mission in Western Sahara, also known as MINURSO, from Special Representative for Western Sahara and head of MINURSO Colin Stewart.
The meeting’s second agenda item will be the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on issues that “fall under the Security Council’s mandate.”
The Polisario Front, along its main supporter, Algeria, have continuously expressed frustration after a set of countries decided to open diplomatic representations in the country’s Western Sahara territory.
Liberia is the latest on the list of countries to open a consulate general in Dakhla, inaugurating its diplomatic representation in the region on March 12.
Ten countries in total opened consulates in the region to date, and Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita vowed that more countries will soon follow suit.
“The opening of the tenth consulate is a goal that Morocco aspired to achieve within a year, but it was achieved in just two months,” Bourita commented.