Geneva support group: UN failed to protect Sahrawis

Geneva, 10 October 2020 (SPS) - The Geneva Support Group for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights in Western Sahara (GAGPPDHSO) on Friday deplored the failure of the United nations in its mandate to protect the fundamental rights of the Sahrawi people, lamenting the "tendency" of the UN organization to "underestimate" the serious violations committed by Morocco.

In an open letter addressed to the members of the Security Council, the Group, which includes 250 NGOs, declares that it has taken note of the report by Secretary General Antonio Guterres on the situation in Western Sahara and considers "it necessary to recall certain fundamental principles of international law and the resolutions taken by various organs of the United Nations and the African Union ".

To this end, it "notes with sadness that the United Nations system as a whole is failing in its mandate to protect the fundamental rights of the people of the non-self-governing territory of Western Sahara enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and the relevant resolutions of the General Assembly ", reinforcing the" position of the powers which seek to weaken the multilateral system and international law ".

The Group notes with "regret" that the Secretary General of the United Nations has "a tendency to underestimate the serious and systematic violations of human rights, as well as the serious and persistent breaches of international humanitarian law that occur in the occupied territory of Western Sahara, including the illegal plundering of Sahrawi natural resources", adding that he "also does not seem to be concerned about the appointment of a new personal envoy".

This group of NGOs also regrets that the "Special Committee on Decolonization does not consider it necessary to request a field visit, while the General Assembly, after deploring the occupation of the territory (resolution 34/37 and 35 / 19), "confines itself to a role of spectator" and does not consider it useful, to demand the application of its relevant resolutions on the matter, on the contrary it elected the occupying power as member of the Special Committee on decolonization " .

Moreover, "The Human Rights Council, since its inception, has been distracted from implementing, in the case of Western Sahara, the AG/UN resolution on the "Universal Realization of the Right of Peoples to Self-Determination" which calls on it "to continue to pay particular attention to violations of human rights, including the right to self-determination, including the right to self-determination, resulting from intervention, aggression or foreign military occupation ". (SPS)