UN's failure in Western Sahara led to tragic events, says US NGO

New York, Oct 8, 2017 (SPS) -The US NGO Western Sahara Foundation said in New York that the failure of the United Nations to hold a referendum on self-determination in Western Sahara had "tragic" consequences on the Saharawi people who underwent torture, imprisonment and disappearances.

Speaking before the 4th UN Decolonization Committee, President of Western Sahara Foundation Suzanne Shcolte stressed that the UN "failed to hold a referendum on self-determination awaited by the Sahrawi people since 26 years and to entrust the MINURSO with a mandate of monitoring human rights in the occupied territories."

She recalled the statements made by former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2016, who called Morocco's presence in Western Sahara "an occupation."

Shcolte stressed before the 4th Committee the Sahrawi issue "is one of the forgotten human tragedies of our time, and this situation is unacceptable."

Shcolte also urged the UN to put an end to this 40-year-old conflict and to "call the King of Morocco to end this illegal occupation."

"The King's plot consists in trying to link the Polisario Front with terrorism," but "the Sahrawi People have never resorted to terrorism and have always respected ceasefire" despite "the atrocious violations inflicted to them," she said, rejecting Morocco's misleading accusations on the matter. (SPS)