For the United States, Sahara independence is not an option: Wall Street Journal

Non-settlement of Sahara issue, a threat for peace & stability in Sahara-Sahel region: WSJ

BYStaff Report
SOURCEEmbassy of Kingdom of Morocco


For the United States, independence is not an option for settling the dispute over the Moroccan Sahara, writes the US daily The Wall Street Journal.

In an article published on Sunday August 11, 2019, the prestigious New York daily reports that US officials who closely follow the discussions on the Sahara issue said that the United States “made it clear that Washington would not support not a plan to create a new state in Africa “.

The security situation in the region makes conflict an urgent matter, says the author, Dion Nissenbaum, who also draws parallels between the UN’s position in support of United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) and some White House officials who show some impatience, arguing that there is no development in the political process.

But the risk of any attempt to derail the UN process may cause discontent and instability in one of the most stable regions, given the many foci of tension and instability in the world today.

“The Minurso has $ 52 million to maintain stability, maintain a ceasefire in a very difficult region,” said Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Nasser Bourita.

“No one has died since the ceasefire, which means it’s the most cost-effective peacekeeping mission in the world,” the minister told the US daily.

Wall Street Journal also notes the position of Western and Moroccan officials who say that privately the United States supports Morocco in its efforts to find a final solution to this conflict that has all too lasted on the basis of a compromise solution guaranteed by the autonomy plan.

Moreover, it is this support from Washington that has encouraged Morocco to return to the table of discussions and relaunch the dynamics of the round tables initiated under the aegis of the UN in the presence of Morocco, Algeria, Mauritania and Polisario.

This dynamic is likely to advance the issue, but this progress is now suffering from the situation in Algeria and the resignation of the Personal Envoy of the UN Secretary General, Horst Köhler.

The Wall Street Journal also discusses the important efforts made by Morocco to promote the development of the Sahara region through considerable investment in various fields.

Morocco reaffirmed internal autonomy for Sahara, no compromise over territorial integrity

Morocco reaffirmed internal autonomy for Sahara, no compromise over territorial integrity

The non-settlement of the Sahara issue poses a threat for peace and stability in the Sahara-Sahel region and US policymakers are fully aware of the urgency to settle the regional conflict, notes the Wall Street Journal in the long article.

The Polisario is a Marxist group linked to regional terrorism, so settling the Sahara conflict is an urgent matter to preserve the security in the region, states the US daily.

In a video posted on the daily’s website along the article on the Sahara issue, journalist Dion Nissenbaum surveys the genesis of the Algeria-backed separatist movement of Marxist obedience and how its connection with terror groups roaming in the Sahel-Sahara threatens peace and stability in the whole region.

The security situation in the region makes it urgent to settle the regional conflict and US policymakers are aware of this emergency, as failure to solve the issue could harm “one of the few remaining pockets of stability in North Africa, creating new opportunities for Islamic State or al Qaeda to expand,” the journalist underscores.

The administration of President Donald Trump that is facing up the terror threat on several fronts, is attentive to the situation in the Sahara and Sahel region, he notes, adding that the White House, being aware of the dangers posed by the SADR [the so-called republic self-proclaimed by the Polisario], is determined to end this conflict.

For the journalist, the dynamics underway under the auspices of the United Nations is the safest and cheapest option to arrive at a consensual outcome.

Besides, the United States made it clear that independence is not an option for settling the dispute over the Moroccan Sahara, and that it would not support a plan leading to a new state in Africa, he recalls.

“A new state in Africa may actually be less safe. If you try to establish a new country, it could create an area that insurgents and groups like the Islamic State could take advantage of and use as a safe haven,” says the journalist in the video, noting that Washington and Rabat share the same position in this regard.

Citing Western and Moroccan officials, the journalists affirms that the United States is supporting Morocco on the Sahara issue.

Actually, Washington has repeatedly expressed its backing to the Morocco-propose autonomy initiative for the Sahara as serious, credible and realistic.

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