Strong Participation of Morocco in C24 Seminar in Venezuela

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A large delegation led by Morocco’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Omar Hilale, took part from May 14 to 16, in the regional seminar of the C24 for the Caribbean, held in Caracas, Venezuela.

The Moroccan delegation was composed mainly of Redouane Houssaini, director of the United Nations and international organizations, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African cooperation and Moroccans living abroad.

This seminar was an opportunity for the Moroccan delegation to inform the members of the Committee and other participants of the latest developments concerning the Moroccan Sahara, in particular the resounding support of the international community for the Autonomy Initiative.

More than 107 Member States support the Moroccan plan while around thirty Consulates General were inaugurated in Laâyoune and Dakhla, confirming the Moroccanness of the Sahara, as well as the unprecedented socio-economic and infrastructural development experienced by its two regions.

This meeting was marked by highlighting Algeria's role in the creation and maintenance of the regional dispute over the Moroccan Sahara, and its historical, political and moral responsibility as the main party to this conflict, as confirmed by Security Council resolutions, including the resolution 2703, adopted on October 30, 2023.

These same resolutions consecrated the seriousness and credibility of the Moroccan Autonomy Initiative, as the one and only solution to the issue of the Moroccan Sahara and reaffirmed that the round tables, with the same four participants and in the same format, remain the only framework for leading the exclusively UN process in order to achieve a political, realistic, pragmatic, lasting and compromise solution to this dispute.

Responding to the fallacious assertions of Algeria's ambassador to the UN, Amar Bendjama regarding the Moroccan Sahara, Morocco’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Mr. Omar Hilale, challenged him about his presence in Caracas, while he has a mandate from the Arab group to defend its causes in New York.

“You talk about the Sahara as if you are not responsible. I have a question to ask you, Mr. Ambassador: the Arab Group which elected you to represent the Arab countries on the Security Council would have liked you to stay in New York to defend the Palestinian cause. You have been here for three days just to read your speech on the Moroccan Sahara”.

“You do not assume your responsibility for which the international community elected you to the Security Council, but you preferred to give priority to your national agenda, that of Algeria on the question of the Moroccan Sahara”, Hilale continued with his questioning.

Ambassador Hilale confronted his Algerian counterpart with his country's obsessive fixation on the Moroccan Sahara, indicating that several issues are on the C24 agenda, while he only addressed the Moroccan Sahara and did not dare to say a word on the other matters.

Responding to the Algerian ambassador's claim that his country is impatient to see the settlement of the Sahara question, and the reasons why this question comes up every year at the C24, the Moroccan diplomat declared: “We are here because Algeria refused to return to the third round table of the political process. You talk about peace, but you refuse to assume your role as the responsible party for a situation that has persisted for half a century”.

Hilale continued to address his Algerian colleague by saying: “It is your country which is responsible for freezing efforts to resolve this regional dispute”. In response to the Algerian ambassador's biased reference to the referendum, Morocco’s ambassador asserted by saying: “you talked about the settlement plan and the referendum, but you forget that the Security Council has buried it for a quarter of a century. Your diplomacy, Mr. Ambassador, suffers from dwarfism”.

“This means that Algeria stopped in 1991 with the settlement plan. It has not evolved since then. Your country has not seen the world evolve. You haven't seen that the Berlin Wall has fallen. You have not seen that there are 107 countries which support the Moroccan Autonomy Initiative. You pretend not to see the number of consulates open in the Moroccan cities of Laâyoune and Dakhla. Algeria has not seen that the Security Council has moved from the settlement plan to the political solution, which requires negotiation between all parties. It has also not seen the same resolutions that call on it to return to the round table process, and to which it persists in saying +NO+! While Algeria participated in the first two round tables, it said NO to the third, although demanded by the Security Council,” Omar Hilale pursued.

Reacting to the reference by his Algerian colleague to the alleged occupation of the Moroccan Sahara and the selective mention of the right to self-determination, the ambassador pointed out that "there is in Algeria, the Kabyle people who await their self-determination for more than 150 years while you terrorize them, imprison them and deprive them of freedom and their most legitimate rights".

Exposing Algeria's responsibility in the regional dispute over the Moroccan Sahara, Hilale continued to challenge his Algerian counterpart by asking “who is blocking the UN political process? It is Algeria. Who shelters, supplies weapons, finances and diplomatically promotes a terrorist separatist movement? It is Algeria. Who was behind the proposal to partition the Moroccan Sahara between the Kingdom and your terrorist separatist movement in 2002, made to former personal envoy James Baker? It is Algeria through its late president Abdelaziz Bouteflika”.


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