Green March: His Majesty’s Speech Highlights Outlines of Moroccan Diplomatic Doctrine on the Kingdom's Territorial Integrity

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The Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccan Expatriates, Mr. Nasser Bourita, took part,
Tuesday, November 9, 2021, in the weekly oral questions session at the House of Advisors (upper house), which was dedicated to the issue of Morocco’s territorial integrity.

Mr. Bourita said that the speech addressed by HM King Mohammed VI to the Nation on the occasion of the 46th anniversary of the Green March "was in all respects a founding speech that clealry highlighted the outlines of the Moroccan diplomatic doctrine on the issue of our territorial integrity and reinforced it through a global political perspective",

Mr. Bourita stressed that the Royal speech also constituted a roadmap to enshrine the Moroccanness of the Sahara and preserve the achievements made by Morocco in international fora, and represents an "indicator initiating a new phase of the global national mobilization behind HM the King within the framework of a long-term vision, conceived by the Sovereign, with a view to moving forward, with force and firmness, for the final settlement of the artificial regional conflict over the Moroccanness of the Sahara".

In this regard, the minister highlighted the unprecedented accumulation of "tangible" developments that the national cause recently experienced as HM the King underlined, adding that the diplomatic doctrine, as defined by the Sovereign in His last speech, is divided into three axes, the first of which relates to the fact that the Moroccanness of the Sahara is an immutable and irreversible reality, consecrated at the international level thanks to the decisive achievements made by Morocco over the past few years, which has "conferred on diplomatic action a credibility reinforced by the consensus of all the components of the Nation and the cohesion of all its active forces, mobilized behind HM the King".

The second axis, said Bourita, consists in the fact that Morocco, which in no way negotiates about its Sahara, is constructively engaged in the UN process in order to reach a peaceful and final political solution to this regional artificial dispute within the framework of Moroccan sovereignty and the territorial integrity of the Kingdom, while the third axis relates to the overall development process of the southern provinces to which HM the King attaches great importance within the framework of His vision with the ambition of developing these provinces and turn them into a locomotive for the implementation of advanced regionalization, with all that it offers in terms of development prospects and real political participation.

Regarding the axis related to the consecration of the Moroccanness of the Sahara, the minister explained that it is an immutable, inalienable and non-negotiable reality, adding that HM the King "affirmed with firmness and determination that the Moroccanness of the Sahara is an immutable and indisputable fact, be it on account of history, legitimacy, the strong will of the Moroccan people or broad recognition by the international community.

Mr. Bourita stressed that this clear Royal confirmation is intended to be a strong and clear message to everyone to remove any ambiguity and challenge any erroneous interpretation of the national position of the Kingdom of Morocco, affirming that the management of the Moroccan Sahara issue takes place within the framework of the full and non-negotiable sovereignty of Morocco over its Sahara and of the autonomy initiative as the only solution for the settlement of this artificial conflict.

He added that Morocco welcomes the continued consecration of the representative legitimacy of the elected representatives of the Moroccan Sahara within the international community and the UN bodies, noting that the participation of the legitimate elected representatives of the southern provinces has been reinforced by an official invitation of the United Nations for the 3rd time in a row to participate in the relevant committees and conferences of the General Assembly as representatives of this integral part of the territory of the Kingdom and of its people.

In this regard, the minister underlined that the representatives of the southern provinces will continue to participate, as was the case previously, in the round tables considered by the Security Council as the sole mechanism for reaching a political solution.

Regarding the second axis on the Moroccan diplomacy doctrine on the issue of the territorial integrity of the Kingdom, Mr. Bourita noted that Morocco, while being convinced that the Moroccanness of the Sahara is not to be negotiated, is "committed constructively to find a solution to the artificial regional conflict, originating from a neighboring state opposed to the legitimate rights of Morocco for the completion of its territorial integrity.

He said in this regard that Morocco's attachment to the UN-led political process is based on its clear announcement that "the Moroccanness of the Sahara will never be on the agenda of any negotiation" as HM King Mohammed VI underlined in his speech, adding that these negotiations seek essentially to achieve a peaceful settlement of this artificial regional conflict.

Based on this logic, he said, Morocco pledged to give its full support to the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and his new Personal Envoy Staffan de Mistura in order to end this artificial conflict within the framework of the autonomy initiative and "nothing else".

Mr. Bourita recalled that the Security Council in its last resolution confirmed Morocco's position by reaffirming the preeminence of the Moroccan autonomy initiative and by rejecting all other outdated approaches or theses that some parties are still trying to revive.

In addition, he added, the Council welcomed the dynamics emanating from the two round tables that took place in Geneva, by explicitly confirming that the form of the round tables in the presence of the stakeholders in this regional dispute, remains the only tool to move forward in the political process, despite the fierce opposition of certain parties to these round tables, expressed during the discussions of the Security Council.

The minister stressed in this context that the UN executive body also underlined the importance of the effective participation of all the parties concerned by this regional dispute by mentioning them by name more than six times, despite the maneuvers and pressure exerted by one party on the members of the Security Council in an attempt to minimize its role and disavow its responsibility.

He also emphasized the determinants and references of the UN process aiming to achieve a pragmatic, realistic, lasting and consensual political solution, "which means that any unrealistic and unworkable solution will not be firmly considered as a settlement to this artificial dispute.

Mr. Bourita noted that the Security Council drew attention to the illegal renunciation by the "Polisario" militias of the ceasefire, in force since 1991, calling on them to cease acts endangering the security and stability of the region.

The Security Council also insisted on the importance of carrying out a census of the populations of the Tindouf camps, clearly referring to the responsibility of the host country, knowing that it has already warned about the humanitarian situation and the violation of the human rights of this population, as well as the structured diversion of humanitarian aid intended for the populations held against their will in the camps, he said.

Morocco will continue to work constructively with the special envoy "within the framework of the Security Council's references and within the framework of the determinants and red lines of the Kingdom, with regard to the parties concerned by the conflict, or to achieve a solution or to the determinants of this solution," said the minister.

Regarding the 3rd axis of this diplomatic doctrine, the foundations of which are set out by the Sovereign in His speech, Mr. Bourita noted that this axis is linked to the development of the southern provinces of the Kingdom, noting that it is also about an option to settle this issue.

The Royal speech highlighted the positive developments in the Sahara issue, which also reinforce the sustained development dynamic in the southern provinces, he said, noting that in this regard, Morocco was able to launch, under the enlightened leadership of His Majesty the King, an effective development dynamic that has enabled the mobilization of significant investments to develop human resources, enhance the products of southern regions and their natural resources and provide support for infrastructure as well as investment in the economic fabric.

Mr. Bourita said that His Majesty the King underlined that Morocco has international partners in good faith who, in all clarity and transparency, invest alongside the national private sector and thus contribute to the well-being of the population, noting that the Sovereign has clearly indicated that with those who display vague or ambivalent positions, Morocco will not engage in any economic or commercial approach that would exclude the Moroccan Sahara.

The minister stressed that the kingdom will continue the implementation of the advanced regionalization project as a strategic choice based on the far-sighted vision of HM the King and enriching the development trajectory of the southern provinces, like the other regions of the Kingdom.

He also underlined that government policies will continue their approach aimed at strengthening infrastructure and socio-economic projects in the Saharan provinces and enhancing their attractiveness for foreign direct investments, so that they can become the gateway to the African continent and an important economic development platform in the region.

Thus, the developments of the national cause require, more than ever, the continuation of the engagement of all the living forces and their full mobilization behind HM the King, in order to defend the territorial integrity and to face the desperate maneuvers of the enemies of the Kingdom, concluded the minister, while welcoming the crucial role played by parliamentary diplomacy and the efforts made by the representatives of the nation for the defense of the national cause, within the framework of parliamentary and parallel diplomacy.

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