Inability of United Nations and attitude of European Union deprive Sahrawis of their right to self-determination

Mon, 10/30/2023 - 20:41

Lugano (Switzerland), 30 October 2023 (SPS) - The representative of the Polisario Front in Switzerland and at the UN and international organizations in Geneva, Oubi Bouchraya Bachir, stated that the UN's failure to fulfill its responsibilities and the attitude of the European Union (EU) regarding the Sahrawi issue are the reasons behind the failure to organize a referendum for self-determination in Western Sahara.

"Despite the Sahrawi people's adherence to the decisions of the international community for over thirty years, sparing no effort to facilitate the United Nations' mission in Western Sahara, this same people have been disappointed by the UN's inability to organize a referendum for self-determination, which was and will remain the key to a peaceful agreement," regretted Oubi Bouchraya during his participation in a symposium as part of the Lugano Film Festival in Switzerland, where the film "Khaïma" ("Tent"), a short film depicting the struggle of the Sahrawi people, was screened.

The Sahrawi diplomat observed in the same context that "the disappointment of the Sahrawi people is not solely caused by the United Nations' inability, but also by other parties, including the EU, which, over the past decades, has not only supported Morocco but has also gone as far as defying its judicial decisions to continue being involved in the plundering of the resources of Western Sahara through an illegal association with the occupying state."

For Oubi Bouchraya, the failure of the United Nations and the EU to intervene "is doubly condemnable, considering the deliberate and conspicuous willingness of Morocco to disregard both international law and the principles of a just peace agreement."

Denouncing the silence and lack of any reaction from the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) regarding the campaign of repression carried out by Morocco against Sahrawi activists in the occupied cities, the representative of the Polisario Front called on "the international community, and particularly the EU, to exert pressure on the Moroccan occupier to prevent further escalations that could harm peace, stability, and security in the region."

He affirmed in this regard that "as long as the UN does not assume its responsibilities and enforce its decisions, it will remain unable to protect peace in the world, and as long as the African Union does not impose respect for the principles of its Constitutive Act to put an end to the Moroccan military occupation of certain parts of our country, there will be no peace or stability in Western Sahara. As for the European Union, it should cease to fight alongside Morocco before the EU Court of Justice to maintain Western Sahara within the framework of trade and fisheries agreements with Morocco."

For him, "it is time for the UN to uphold the principles for which it was created: to preserve peace and establish justice in order to restore the credibility of the Sahrawi people in international institutions."