The status of POLISARIO at the UN is anchored in solid foundations rooted in the sacrifices of the Sahrawi people

The Permanent Representatives of Member States to the United Nations

New York

New York, 9 July 2021

Excellencies,

You will have received a letter from the ambassador of the occupying state of Morocco in which he once again engages in his habitual exercise of trying futilely to mislead Member States of the United Nations regarding the status of the Frente POLISARIO, the national liberation movement of Western Sahara, and its Representatives at the United Nations.

The letter circulated recently by the above-mentioned individual is meant as a response to our letter addressed to you on 27 June 2021 in which we refute with solid and documented arguments every single one of the unfounded claims that he made before the latest session of the Special Committee on Decolonisation (C-24) regarding the internationally recognised legal nature of the question of Western Sahara.

Nonetheless, instead of responding to the substance of our letter due to his lack of anything meaningful to say, the ambassador of the occupying state of Morocco has brazenly resorted to argumentum ad hominem, which seems to be the only thing that he can produce when faced with solid and irrefutable arguments.

In his letter, the above-mentioned individual questions the status of the Representative of the Frente POLISARIO at the United Nations and claims that “he does not have any accreditation at the United Nations”. This is another example of this individual’s unlimited capacity to shamelessly make the most preposterous claims that are an insult to everyone’s intelligence.

No one can deny that the Frente Popular para la Liberación de Saguia el-Hamra y de Río de Oro (Frente POLISARIO) is the internationally recognised legitimate representative of the people of the Non-Self-Governing Territory of Western Sahara in accordance with General Assembly Resolutions A/RES/34/37 and A/RES/35/19, among others. No one can also deny that the Frente POLISARIO is equally recognised by both the General Assembly and the Security Council as one of the two parties to the conflict in Western Sahara in accordance with their respective Resolutions A/RES/36/46 and S/RES/658 and subsequent resolutions.

The Frente POLISARIO has been represented at the United Nations since the 1970s. It was in this context that, on 22 June 1979, the Security Council (S/PV/.2153) invited the Representative of the Frente POLISARIO to address the Council on the question of Western Sahara during the meeting that was requested by the occupying state of Morocco that was incurring heavy losses on the battlefield at the time.

As has always been the case, the Representatives of the Frente POLISARIO at the United Nations are duly accredited by the United Nations to discharge their diplomatic mission in accordance with the established procedures of the Organisation. They have their own UN accreditations that give them full access to the UN Headquarters to attend meetings on Western Sahara and to meet with UN senior officials, including the Secretary-General.

The ambassador of the occupying state of Morocco also rehashes his characteristically mendacious propaganda by describing the Frente POLISARIO as an “armed group” which he associates with his often-repeated false claims.

The Frente POLISARIO is an internationally recognised national liberation movement that was established by the Sahrawi people on 10 May 1973 to fight against Spanish colonial presence in Western Sahara. In this regard, it is worth recalling the conclusions of the Report of the United Nations Visiting Mission to Western Sahara (the then Spanish Sahara) and the neighbouring countries in May-June 1975 (A/10023/Add.5).

The Report of the UN Visiting Mission underlined that: (1) “the Frente POLISARIO, although considered a clandestine movement before the Mission’s arrival, appeared as a dominant political force in the Territory”, and it “had considerable support among all sections of the population” (paras. 21; 219); and that (2) “it became evident to the Mission that there was an overwhelming consensus among Sahrawis within the Territory in favour of independence and opposing integration with any neighbouring country” (paras. 202; 229).

Today more than ever, these undeniable facts are becoming more consolidated as the people of Western Sahara, under the leadership of the Frente POLISARIO, continue their recognised legitimate struggle (General Assembly Res. A/RES/34/37, among others) against Morocco’s illegal occupation of our land, which has been going on since 31 October 1975.

The occupying state of Morocco knows very well, as everyone else does, that it was the Frente POLISARIO that bravely fought it for 16 years and eventually forced it to accept the UN-OAU Settlement Plan providing for the 1991 ceasefire and the referendum on self-determination.

The occupying state and its agents cannot deny that the Frente POLISARIO captured more than 3,000 Moroccan prisoners of war (POWs) who were released after the ceasefire in coordination with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

Since 13 November 2020, following the documented breach by the occupying state of Morocco of the ceasefire, it is the Frente POLISARIO whose liberation army is resisting the Moroccan new act of aggression.

Moreover, the occupying state of Morocco cannot deny that today it sits side by side along with the Sahrawi Republic (SADR), the founding member of the African Union (AU) to which Morocco was admitted in 2017 after signing and ratifying, without any reservation, the AU Constitutive Act and thus adhering to its fundamental principles including respect for borders existing on achievement of independence (b; article 4).

These are established facts that the Moroccan occupying state cannot deny.

The problem of the ambassador of the occupying state of Morocco is that he confuses United Nations Member States and the international public opinion with his own domestic opinion that he is used to dupe with his mendacious propaganda. It is also no secret that, since his arrival in New York, this individual has been doing what it takes to please his mentors and avoid falling into disgrace as was the fate suffered by his immediate predecessor. This is simply what explains this individual’s objectionable behaviour and his utter disregard for the minimum standards of decorum and tact.

His reluctance to even refer to our national liberation movement by its proper name is at odds with the conduct of his predecessors and senior Moroccan officials. Suffice it to recall, for instance, the letters addressed to the President of the Security Council (S/2009/197) and to the Secretary-General (S/2011/207) by the foreign minister of the occupying state of Morocco in which he referred expressly to POLISARIO without the qualifying attributes used often by the above-mentioned individual. Former ambassadors of the occupying state of Morocco to the United Nations also referred to our movement by its proper name (S/2008/221 and S/2008/348, to cite a few examples).

In conclusion, however persistent are the occupying state of Morocco and its agents in their mendacious propaganda, the status of the Frente POLISARIO at the United Nations and elsewhere is firmly established because it has been shaped and cemented by the sacrifices of our people and their unwavering determination to liberate our illegally occupied land and exercise our inalienable right to freedom and independence.

Please accept, Excellencies, the assurances of my highest consideration.

 

Dr Sidi M. Omar

Ambassador

Representative of the Frente POLISARIO at the United Nations