AU Chair calls for calm between Saharawi Republic and Morocco and for upholding OAU-UN Settlement Plan of 1991

Pretoria (South Africa) 12 November 2020 (SPS)- The African Union Chair, H.E. the President of the Republic of South Africa, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, called Today on the two parties to the conflict in Western Sahara, Saharawi Republic and Morocco, for calm and urged them to uphold OAU-UN Settlement Plan of 1991, in a statement published on the South African Presidency’s page Today.

He stressed that he “has been made aware of the growing tension between the Western Sahara and Morocco, arising from a dispute on the buffer zone,” in reference to the current situation in Guerguarat region, where dozens of Saharawi civilians are peacefully demonstrating against the persistence of the Moroccan occupation and illegal exploitation of their country by Morocco.

President Ramaphosa “asked the two countries to ease tensions and return to the negotiations. He further urges all the parties to uphold the Settlement Plan, which provides for “a cease-fire” and the holding of a referendum for the people of Western Sahara to exercise their right to self-determination,” the statement reads.

The Chair of the AU also called upon “the United Nations’ Secretary-General to urgently appoint a Special Envoy to the Western Sahara to address all the underlying causes of tensions and assist with finding lasting peace in that region.” (SPS)

090/500/60 (SPS)