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European MPs/ Western Sahara: UN must monitor human rights
14/03/2009

   

 

   

European MPs/ Western Sahara: UN must monitor human rights

A European Parliament delegation hopes that the UN mission in Western Sahara (MINURSO) is responsible to monitor the situation of concern for human rights, according to a MEPs online report Saturday by the newspaper El Pais.

The delegation proposes that the UN mandate includes monitoring the situation of human rights in the region, according to the report alleges that recurrent attacks on human rights in Western Sahara .

“To this end, the United Nations should be able to rely on the agreement of all parties concerned and have access to people,” says the delegation which includes MEPs from Cyprus , Spain , Belgium , d Italy , Austria .

This “ad hoc delegation for Western Sahara” was established in 2005 to investigate on the situation of human rights in this former Spanish colony annexed by Morocco in 1975.

Its report is due to travel on behalf of its members and El Pais has obtained a copy before publication.

According to the report, the delegation noted that three major problems persist in the region. It cites “repeated violations of human rights, including freedom of expression, association, demonstration, communication, movement and access to justice”, “humanitarian issues focusing on the right and facilities given to separate families to meet and precarious living conditions in Tindouf camps and the question of missing persons which requires hard work.”

A cease-fire agreement in 1991 under the auspices of the United Nations ended the military phase of the conflict over Western Sahara . MINURSO (UN Mission for Referendum in Western Sahara ), which monitors its implementation, is based in El Ayoun, capital of the territory.

Western Sahara was annexed by Rabat in 1975 which offers a broad autonomy of the territory under its sovereignty. The Polisario Front, supported by Algeria , rejected the Moroccan initiative and calls for “the right of the Sahraoui people to self-determination.”