New York (United Nations), November 01, 2023 (SPS) - The Deputy Permanent Representative of South Africa to the United Nations, Marthinus van Schalkwyk, renewed on Monday his country’s support for the efforts of the Personal Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General for Western Sahara, Staffan de Mistura, to reach a political solution that is “just and acceptable to both parties" and stipulates the self-determination of the Sahrawi people.
Following the Security Council’s approval of a regulation on extending the mandate of the United Nations Mission for the Organization of a Referendum in Western Sahara MINURSO until October 31, 2024, the Deputy Permanent Representative of South Africa affirmed to the press Pretoria’s firm position in supporting the United Nations’ efforts and the efforts of its special envoy, reiterating its support for “a political and sustainable settlement acceptable to both parties that allows the Sahrawi people to exercise their right to self-determination.”
In this context, Mr. Marthinus van Schalkwyk stated, "We continue our support for the efforts of the Sahrawi people and their representative, the Polisario Front, to achieve peace in the region."
The Security Council called on, in a regulation on renewing the mandate of MINURSO for a full year, the two parties to the conflict (Morocco and the Polisario Front) to “resume negotiations under the supervision of the Secretary-General without preconditions” in order to “reach a just and sustainable political solution agreed upon by both parties and allowing the Sahrawi people to decide their fate."
The Security Council's regulation praised the "efforts" of Staffan de Mistura, who last September, for the first time since his appointment in 2021, was able to visit the occupied territories of Western Sahara, where he witnessed first-hand the suppression of a peaceful demonstration organized by Sahrawi activists to demand the exercise of their right to self-determination.