Western Sahara: Russia to the Security Council - 'We Stand for Well-Balanced and Unbiased Policy for Western Sahara Settlement'

New York (United Nations) — The Deputy Permanent Representative of Russian Federation to the UN, Vladimir Safronkov, affirmed that Russia stands for well-balanced and unbiased policy for Western Sahara settlement", in his country's Explanation of Vote on UN Security Council's resolution 2494 adopted last 30th October on Western Sahara.

Adopted by 13 votes for and the abstention of Russia and South Africa, the new Security Council's resolution was far from enjoying full support from the members of the Security Council. Other members, such as China, also expressed discomfort towards the text though it voted for it just to maintain peace in this last colony in Africa.

As a permanent member of the Security Council and also member of the so-called Group of friends of Western Sahara (a de facto group in the Security Council whose members are US, France, Spain, Russia and UK), Russia is "convinced that only a mutually acceptable solution that is based on UN resolutions and complies with procedures that correlate to provisions and principles of the UN Charter can be sustainable and viable", Russian Representatives asserts.

The Russian Federation was of the view that Security Council's "replacement of basic principles of settlement in Western Sahara with general remarks about the need to stick to realistic approaches and be ready for compromise - this is something that creates ambiguity, undermines trust to our work and obscures the prospects of political process."

Russia further believes that "tasks that are included in MINURSO mandate still need to be solved. At the same time, we believe relevant resolutions should not try to pre-define the direction of negotiations held under UN auspices or to amend previously agreed approaches that had been endorsed by previous resolutions."

"Unfortunately, (Russian Explanation of vote emphasizes) in recent years the resolution that extended MINURSO mandate has undergone some amendments that in our view damage the unprejudiced and unbiased approach of the Council. Previously agreed parameters should not be blurred." (SPS)

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