OECS urges peace in Western Sahara

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OECS urges peace in Western Sahara

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

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CASTRIES, St Lucia (CMC) — The Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Tuesday urged all parties to preserve the peace and stability within the “Buffer Zone” of El Guerguerat in the Sahara.

In a congratulatory message to the government of Morocco that is celebrating the 65th anniversary of its political independence, the sub-regional grouping said it wanted to express its “support for the actions taken by the government of Morocco to preserve the peace and stability within the “Buffer Zone” of El Guerguerat in the Sahara, as well as to allow the free movement of people and goods to the wider African Continent.

“With the volatility occasioned by the global pandemic when all countries big and small, rich and poor, face an enemy of COVID-19, we urge an unwavering focus on this threat to all humanity and urge adherence to the Resolutions of the United Nations Security Council, in particular Resolution 24.14 and 24.40 which call for the maintenance of peace and order in this North African region.”

The OECS, which groups the independent islands of Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and St Kitts-Nevis, added, “we urge that all parties adhere to these resolutions to refrain from acts of aggression and to ensure the safety of civilians and to play their part in the free movement of people and goods in the El Guerguerat zone”.

“The Organization of Eastern Caribbean States appeals to all parties to respect the United Nations Security Council Resolutions and to abide by all existing ceasefire agreements.”

Last weekend, Mauritania expressed reservations about the second sand wall built by Morocco too close to the border of El Guerguerat, stressing Nouakshott's “dissatisfaction” with such a territorial expansion.

Earlier this month, Morocco said its troops launched an operation in a no man's land on the southern border of Western Sahara to end “provocations” by the pro-independence Polisario Front that had earlier declared a three-decade-old ceasefire in disputed Western Sahara was over.

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