On Friday, Guinea’s permanent mission to the UN thanked the Moroccan government for facilitating the opening of a Guinean consulate general in Dakhla, southern Morocco.
The West African country opened its diplomatic representation in the southern province on January 17, 2020, becoming one of a dozen African states that have since expressed their support for Morocco’s territorial integrity by opening consulates in Western Sahara.
“The opening of the Guinean Consulate General in Dakhla reflects the excellence of relations between our two countries,” Guinea’s diplomatic representation said.
In a statement prepared on October 14 but presented to the UN General Assembly’s Fourth Committee on October 23, Guinea reiterated its trust in Morocco’s Autonomy Plan to solve the Western Sahara conflict.
The proposal, which Morocco submitted to the UN in 2007, seeks to turn Western Sahara into a semi-autonomous region. The local population would independently manage its political and socio-economic development, while the central Moroccan government would handle issues of national interest, such as diplomacy and national defense.
“It must be recognized that [Morocco] has made serious efforts as part of its autonomy initiative, in particular by launching institutional and economic reforms aimed at promoting human rights and development in the southern provinces,” the Guinean statement said.
Based on Morocco’s achievements in the region, Guinea believes the Autonomy Plan is “a compromise solution that respects international law and the UN General Assembly and Security Council’s resolutions.”
The Guinean diplomatic mission also shared its optimistic vision for the future of the UN-led political process, insisting it wishes for future talks on the territorial dispute to be more conclusive.
Of the importance of finding a solution to the Western Sahara issue, the West African country said stability and prosperity of the Sahelo-Saharan region largely depends on solving the Sahara conflict.
“In this regard, our country welcomes the two roundtables in Geneva that brought together the concerned parties,” the statement said.
“Guinea remains convinced that the solution to the issue of the Moroccan Sahara can only be reached through an inclusive dialogue,” it added.
Morocco, Algeria, Mauritania, and the separatist Polisario Front met in a roundtable format in December 2018 and March 2019. Despite growing signs of defiance and boycott from the pro-Polisario camp, the international community still considers the meetings to be an important step in the UN-led political process.