Mogherini urged to intervene on expulsion of MINURSO staff by Morocco

Brussels, April 19, 2016 (SPS) - European deputies, concerned by the situation in the occupied territories of Western Sahara, urged the European Commission, particularly the high representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, to intervene on the expulsion of the civilian staff of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) by Morocco.

In a written question to Federica Mogherini, the Euro-MP Miguel Viegas expressed his concern about the consequences of taking such a decision by the Moroccan authorities on the stability of the region.

“This decision can endanger the ceasefire, in force since 1991, when Morocco committed to organizing a self-determination referendum, even if such a referendum has never taken place,” he wrote in his question to Mogherini.

The Euro-MP who wondered about the consequences of the Moroccan authorities’ “new illegal action” on the different current agreements between EU and Morocco, said that the decision to expel the civilian staff of the MINURSO was taken after describing the Moroccan presence in Western Sahara by UN Secretary General as “occupation”, following his visit to the region.

On 20 March, More than 80 members of MINURSO’s civilian staff left the occupied territories of Western Sahara on the orders of Morocco as a sign of protest against the words of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in his last visit to the region. (SPS)