UN Secretary General calls for “sustained” human rights monitoring in Western Sahara

New York, April 10, 2014 (SPS) - The Secretary General of the United Nations Mr. Ban Ki-moon U.N. called Thursday for “sustained” human rights monitoring in the territory Western Sahara, occupied by Morocco since 1975, warning against unfair exploitation of the territory’s natural resources.
The comments were included in the UN Chief’s latest report on Western Sahara to the UN Security Council, quoted by Reuters.
The UN Secretary General welcomed the Polisario Front’s willingness to work with United Nations rights bodies, highlighting that the end goal nevertheless remain a “sustained, independent and impartial” human rights monitoring mechanism to be established in Western Sahara.
Mr. Ki-moon renewed his call for a revival of the talks between the two parties to the conflict of Western Sahara, the Frente Polisario and the Kingdom of Morocco, aimed at securing a political deal and self-determination for the people of Western Sahara.
With regard to the issue of the exploitation of Western Sahara’s natural resources by Morocco, the report called for recognizing the principle that the interests of the inhabitants of Western Sahara “are paramount”, as cited by the United Nations Charter
Ban recommends renewing the mandate of the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) for another year, while calling for adding 15 additional U.N. observers to the 225 already there.
Last year, the United States proposed a draft resolution to the UN Security Council providing that MINURSO take on the job of human rights monitoring in Western Sahara.