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Guterres Urges Western Sahara Conflict Parties to Have ‘a Stronger Interest’ in Solutions

Guterres Urges Western Sahara Conflict Parties to Have ‘a Stronger Interest’ in Solutions

Sunday, 23 January, 2022 - 09:30
United Nations envoy Staffan De Mistura, second right, speaks with Nasser Bourita, Morocco's foreign minister, second left, and Omar Hilal, the country's ambassador to the UN, left, during a meeting in Rabat, Morocco, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022. (AP)

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on all the parties involved in the Western Sahara conflict to have “a stronger interest” in resolving the conflict.

Guterres said on Friday, in statements quoted by the United Nations website, that “the time has come for the parties to the conflict to understand the need for dialogue and to seek a solution, and not just to maintain an endless process, without hope for a solution.”

His statement came in response to a question about the UN Envoy to Western Sahara, Staffan De Mistura’s first visit to the region.

He added: "I hope that the political process will develop again," saying it is a "problem that has been going on for several decades in a region of the world in which we see very serious security problems, where we see terrorism proliferating in the Sahel and increasingly near the coasts. It is in everyone's interest to solve the problem of Western Sahara once and for all."

De Mistura embarked on his regional tour by visiting Morocco on Jan. 13.

Morocco reiterated support for "the resumption of the political process" under the leadership of the UN. It also insisted on the need for direct and clear dialogue between it, Algeria, the Polisario Front, and Mauritania.

De Mistura had visited the Polisario Front refugee camp in Tindouf, Algeria, and met with Brahim Ghali, leader of the Polisario Front.

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