5 November 2012

Western Sahara: Ross Concludes Working Visit to Saharawi Refugee Camps

Photo: UN Photo/Martine Perret
A member of the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO)'s Military Liaison Office chats with a group of local Western Saharans (file photo).

Smara — The UN Personal Envoy Christopher Ross concluded Monday morning a three-day working visit to the Saharawi refugee camps, by a meeting in the Wilaya of Smara with some personalities and chieftains participated at the voter identification process , in addition to Smara's authorities and citizens.

People and authorities of Smara organized a popular celebration to receive the UN Envoy Christopher Ross.

Speaking during the event, the Governor of Smara Mr. Adda Hmeim held the United Nations Organization humanitarian responsibility of the Saharawi people, calling on him to work for alleviate suffering of the Saharawi refugees.

From his part, President of Constitutional Council underlined that the Saharawi chieftains completed, in the voter identification, all the practical steps to prepare for the referendum leaving only the application of the other steps, highlighting in this regard that Morocco's rejection to include the option of independence within the referendum "conclusive evidence" of Rabat's pre-fear of the results.

He called for reviewing all the lists and procedures issued during work the voter identification committee as a way to ensure a Saharawi popular consultation, calling on the UN to work for conducting the self-determination referendum, remove Moroccan military wall and reunite the separated Saharawi families.

"I hope that the negotiations process be resumed sooner. I am keen to find a solution ending the conflict and suffering of the Saharawis. Thus, I will continue and I will be patient," said Christopher Ross addressing wide range of Saharawi personalities attended the event.

During the visit, Ross held several meetings and talks with Saharawi officials, led by the Saharawi President Mohamed Abdelaziz, and representatives of civil society.

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