See also:
» 05.03.2011 - Peaceful Western Sahara anti-government protests
» 28.02.2011 - Even Sahrawis plan pro-democracy protests
» 12.02.2011 - Saharawis at unease over Algeria, Morocco unrest
» 11.10.2010 - Sahrawis awake to government opposition
» 11.02.2010 - Morocco-Polisario revive talks
» 03.02.2010 - New talks on Western Sahara in US
» 18.12.2009 - Sahara activist allowed back home
» 11.12.2009 - UN chief intevening in Saharawi activist cause

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Western Sahara
Politics | Human rights | Society

W/Sahara asks UN to establish protection mechanism

afrol News, 2 April - The Saharawi President, Mohamed Abdelaziz, has called upon the UN Secretary General, to device a mechanism to ensure respect for the human rights in Western Sahara, the last African colony.

"UN has the absolute obligation to protect civilians and monitor the human rights situation through the mission of peacekeepers in the territory," President Abdelaziz wrote in his letter to Mr Ban Ki Moon.

The Saharawi president has expressed great concern over the human rights situation in the territories of Western Sahara occupied by Morocco for the past three decades.

“A systematic policy of terror by Morocco, repression, torture and, sometimes, murder in a vain attempt to crush the Saharawi people and to impose the repression of foreign occupation is long over due,” he said.

Morocco has annexed the former Spanish colony since 1976, leaving around one third of mostly uninhabited Saharawi lands, the interior part bordering Algeria and Mauritania on Polisario's hands.

"This situation that had mentioned in some of reports to the Security Council are even more worrying as it continues with impunity and in the eyes of MINURSO,” President Abdelaziz said.

The ad hoc delegation of the European Parliament who visited the region last January, has found the need to create mechanisms for the protection of human rights, arguing that a better monitoring of human rights is imperative and could be an advocate for mutual trust to facilitate negotiations between the warring parties.

The European Delegation concluded its report by suggesting that "the United Nations mandate should include the monitoring of the human rights situation in the region.

“To this end, the United Nations must provide unimpeded access to populations to collect any complaint concerning disrespect for human rights,” the mission said, further urging EU member states in the Security Council, to work towards the direction.

The Human Rights Watch report released in December 2008 found that MINURSO has no mechanism to protect human rights in the Western Sahara, also calling on both Morocco and Polisario to take specific steps to improve the human rights situation in the territories and on the United Nations Security Council to ensure regular human rights monitoring in both Western Sahara and Tindouf refugees camp in Algeria.

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