The Western Sahara Action Forum offers its full support to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in the wake of his visit to the Tindouf refugee camps and the liberated territory east of the berm. After drawing attention to Morocco’s occupation of Western Sahara, the Secretary-General has been subject to a shocking barrage of personal insults, with the Moroccan government showing utter disrespect for the Secretary-General’s office.
Ban Ki-moon’s first visit to the Tindouf camps was an important opportunity for him to listen to people whose voices are rarely heard. The Saharawi refugees have suffered for 40 years as a result of Morocco’s occupation of Western Sahara, and it was an encouraging development to see the UN Secretary-General visit them. WSAF is pleased that the UN leadership has not relinquished its duty to the people of Western Sahara.
Morocco’s subsequent threat to expel the international staff on the MINURSO mission is yet another example of its attempts to manipulate the UN process, in order to maintain its illegal occupation. Morocco’s 25 years of posturing and obstruction of the UN process is enough. WSAF calls upon the UN Security Council to take a firm stance in support of the Secretary-General and MINURSO.
The UN is required to provide the people of Western Sahara with a referendum on the right to self-determination under international law. MINURSO must deliver the mandate bestowed upon it. The UN Security Council must respond to Morocco’s recent actions by setting a date for a referendum on the status of Western Sahara. WSAF stands by the UN and Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in seeking a just resolution to this forty-year-old injustice.