Malta to host UN conference on Western Sahara’s future

Malta has accepted a request by the United Nations to host a high level conference aimed at forging a stable future for the Western Sahara, a region which has been disputed for decades.

Foreign Minister Tonio Borg informed the UN of Malta’s acceptance today.

The region is bordered by Morocco, Algeria and Mauritania and is largely administered by the Polisario front.

The conference is to be attended by the Special representative of the UN Secretary General for the region, representatives of the bordering nations and the Polosario front, among others.

The UN Security Council had agreed on a settlement plan providing for a transitional period in preparation for the holding of a referendum in which the people would be asked to choose between a referendum or integration with Morocco. Yet, 23 years on, little progress has been made and there have been several clashes between Saharans and Moroccans.

The EU in a resolution last year had backed efforts for a just, lasting and mutually acceptable political solution providing for self-determination for the people of the region.

See also

http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/minurso/index.shtml

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