Western Sahara: a ‘peaceful solution’ to conflict is possible, says UN envoy

UN Photo/Martine Perret Peacekeepers have been stationed in Western Sahara since 1991 when the UN mission, MINURSO, was established. (file)

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.

The first UN-led talks in six years over the disputed Western Sahara-region concluded on a positive note on Thursday in Geneva, where the Organization’s representative Horst Köhler said that further discussions are planned “in the first quarter of 2019”.

Speaking to journalists after two days of roundtable discussions in the Swiss city, Mr Köhler said the meeting was a “first – but important – step” towards a renewed political process on the future of the disputed territory.

“I would like to applaud the delegations for having engaged openly and in a spirit of mutual respect,” he said, adding that “nobody wins from maintaining the status quo”.

Resolving the conflict “lies in the interest of all”, Mr. Köhler added, in his capacity as Personal Envoy of the Secretary-General for Western Sahara, where decades of conflict over disputed ownership has been contained since 1991, by the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO).

Following the Geneva meeting, Mr. Köhler explained that the ultimate goal is “to create an environment in the region that is conducive to strong economic growth, job creation and better security”.

And looking ahead to next year’s talks, the Personal Envoy of the Secretary-General for Western Sahara expressed the hope that the process would be guided “by a concern for the men and women, the children and youth” of the territory.

“A peaceful solution to this conflict is possible,” he insisted, while also commending the representatives from Morocco, the Frente POLISARIO movement, Algeria and Mauritania for “engaging openly…and committing to resolving the conflict”.

Reading an agreed final communiqué, Mr. Köhler noted that all delegations “recognized that cooperation and regional integration, not confrontation, were the best way to address the many important challenges the region is facing”.

Mr Köhler also underlined the significance of the Geneva meeting – which follows a recent UN Security Council meeting and resolution to extend MINURSO – and explained the overall objective: for the people of Western Sahara to take charge of their future.

“The goal of this process is…according to the United Nations Security Council, to find “a just, lasting and mutually acceptable solution that will provide for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara’,” he said.

Adopted on 31 October 2018, UN Security Council resolution 2440 calls on the parties to the dispute over Western Sahara “to engage constructively” in talks.

Parties should “demonstrate political will in order to advance the negotiations”, Council Members said, while also emphasizing the importance of an “enduring political solution based on compromise and the need to provide for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara in a manner consistent with the Charter of the United Nations”.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

A Sting Exclusive: “Sustainable development goals: what role for business?” Commissioner Mimica asks live from European Business Summit 2015

Britain’s May won the first round on the Brexit agreement with the EU

Dear China

The “Legend of the Sun” wishes you Happy Chinese New Year 2015 from Brussels

India is a latecomer to AI. Here’s how it plans to catch up

EU adopts retaliative measures in response to US steel and aluminum tariffs

A Brussels antithesis reveals where the EU is heading

Syria: Civilians bear brunt of unilateral sanctions, exacerbating ‘unparalleled suffering, destruction,’ says UN expert

‘Pioneering’ former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet officially appointed new UN human rights chief

MWC 2016 LIVE: Mobile World Congress shows off planes, trams and automobiles

EU and New Zealand launch trade negotiations

Satellites and data are going to help us phase out fossil fuels. Here’s how

Italian elections: a long political limbo is ahead

The dangers of data: why the numbers never tell the full story

US migrant children policy reversal, still ‘fails’ thousands of detained youngsters: UN rights experts

The three sins the EU committed in 2015

Why sustainable products are a win-win for all of us

The financial crisis always prefers the south of Eurozone

Ebola outbreak in DR Congo declared over, now let’s tackle other health challenges: WHO chief

MEPs back plans to halt spread of drug resistance from animals to humans

Responsible Artificial Intelligence

Respect for fundamental rights and freedoms key for peaceful polls in DRC – UN mission chief

Estonia is making public transport free

Belgium: Youth Forum takes legal step to ban unpaid internships

This is the life of a refugee: the constant destruction and construction of dreams every day

Replacement for United States on Human Rights Council to be elected ‘as soon as possible’

5 facts about global military spending

TTIP’s 11th round starts in Miami but EU-US businesses see no sunny side

Young students envision turning Europe into an Entrepreneurial Society

The scary EU elections result and the delayed Council’s repentance

Is poverty and exclusion the necessary price for EU’s recovery?

Commission and ECB prepare new financial mega-tool in support of SMEs

MWC 2016 LIVE: Verizon boasts momentum for IoT platform

A Sting Exclusive: EU Commissioner Mimica looks at how the private sector can better deliver for international development

UN chemical weapons watchdog adds new powers to assign blame, following attacks

Except Poland, can climate change also wait until 2021 for the EU Market Stability Reserve to be launched?

This is what countries are doing to fight plastic waste

Parliament pushes for cleaner cars on EU roads by 2030

Pakistan’s digital revolution is happening faster than you think

Sahel States need international support ‘now more than ever’– UN peacekeeping chief

Inflation down to 0.7%, unemployment up at 12.2%: Bad omens for Eurozone

Canada needs to increase foreign aid flows in line with its renewed engagement

Bram in Colombia

Amazon indigenous groups want to create a nature sanctuary the size of Mexico

Capitalism’s greatest weakness? It confuses price with value

EU lawmakers vote to reintroduce visas for Americans over “reciprocity principle”

Yemen talks: Truce agreed over key port city of Hudaydah

Changing for the change: Medicine in Industry 4.0

UN agency warns conditions around Yemen’s key port city of Hudaydah still ‘very bad’, as staff rush to deliver aid

A male gynecologist in Iraq: red line violated

“Is Europe innovative? Oh, Yes we are very innovative!”, Director General of the European Commission Mr Robert-Jan Smits on another Sting Exclusive

UK’s Cameron takes the field to speed up TTIP talks. Will “rocket boosters” work?

Eurozone: Avoiding a new Greek accident

EU summit: No energy against tax evasion and fraud

Commission: Do it like the Americans in the food sector

The gender gap of medicine in 2018

Parliament cuts own spending to facilitate agreement on EU budget

A Sting Exclusive: “Delivering on the Environmental Dimension of the new Sustainable Development Agenda”, Ulf Björnholm underscores from UNEP Brussels

UN chief welcomes event reuniting families on the Korean Peninsula

What next after more sanctions against Russia, will the Ukrainian civil war end?

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s