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Moroccan Sahara: Security Council 'Concerned' About Situation in Guergarat
22/03/2018
The UN Security Council said on Wednesday it is "concerned" about the situation in Guergarat, stressing the "need" for full implementation of resolution 2351, adopted in April 2017 by the United Nations Security Council, which reiterates the pre-eminence of the autonomy plan in the Sahara under Moroccan sovereignty.

"The members of the Security Council expressed their concern about the situation in Guergarat, and recalled the importance of maintaining the status quo, as mentioned in the report of the Secretary-General, as well as the need for the full implementation of resolution 2351 ", said president of the Council, Dutch ambassador to the UN, Karel van Oosterom.

In his report circulated to the members of the Security Council in April 2017, Guterres had demanded the complete and immediate withdrawal of the polisario from the Guergarat buffer zone.

In this regard, he said that he "remains deeply concerned about the continued presence of armed elements of the polisario Front in this region, and about the challenges this poses to the raison d'être of this buffer zone." Guterres acknowledged that this situation could "lead to the collapse of the ceasefire" and create a "dangerous impact" on the security and stability of the entire region.

The statement by the Dutch ambassador comes after a Security Council briefing by UN Secretary-General's Personal Envoy for the Sahara, Horst Kohler, and UN Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Jean Pierre Lacroix.

The Council, said van Oosterom, expresses his "full support" for the efforts of the Personal Envoy, and "welcomes its recent bilateral meetings with the parties and neighboring countries to relaunch the negotiation process with a new dynamic and a new spirit leading to the resumption of a political process under the auspices of the Secretary-General.”

The Dutch diplomat concluded that members of the Security Council "have stressed the importance of maintaining a constructive commitment in order to advance the political process."

For his part, French ambassador to the UN, François Delattre told reporters that the Council held "very good consultations" on the Sahara issue.

In his turn, Kohler said he had "a very encouraging meeting with the members of the Council."