Shahid El Hafed (Refugee Camps), 6 March 2016 (SPS) - UN Secretary General Ban Ki moon said Saturday in Shahid El Hafed in the Sahrawi refugee camps that it is necessary to find solution that allows the Sahrawi people to exercise its right to self-determination.
"No real progress has been made to reach lasting and just solution" which allows "the Sahrawi people to exercise right to self-determination and this is what requests the UN Security Council since 2004," Ban Ki-moon told the press after his meeting with Sahrawi president and Polisario Front general secretary Mohamed Abdelaziz and members of the Sahrawi government.
He stressed that his first objective is to make an "assessment of the situation so to be able to provide my own contribution to the efforts aiming at finding solution," voicing his willingness to boost the UN settlement process, as the talks with Polisario Front officials "had outlined good points in this regard."
Ban Ki-moon said that this visit will allow him to "inquire about MINURSO activities in the Sahrawi refugee camps and the excellent work of the UN demining unit".
Ban Ki-moon also plans to visit soon El Aaiun in the occupied territories, to meet the UN Mission for the Referendum on self-determination in Western Sahara.
This visit enabled me to see with my own eyes the sufferings of the Sahrawi refugees, Ban underlined adding that this is a tragedy forgotten by the international community and that the Sahrawi refugee camps in Tindouf are the world's oldest camps."
Ban Ki-moon lamented "the suffering of the Saharawi people, whose cause is forgotten by the international community," indicating that the UN "will work more for the resumption of dialogue and assistance of refugees."
The UN SG addressed a message to international donors to increase their aid to this forgotten people, he deemed "a humanitarian case."
"We have in the future, a meeting of donor countries in Geneva and for the first time in the history of the UN, a world humanitarian conference next May in Istanbul," he said. (SPS)