Marocafrik : Bulletin d'information maroco-africain

Algeria Continues its Obsessional Hostility against Morocco Instead of Working for the Future of the Region - Ambassador

Publié le Jeudi 10 Décembre 2020 | MAP

​Rome - Algeria continues its obsessive hostility against Morocco's territorial integrity instead of working towards building the future of the young Algerian and Maghrebian generations, said Morocco's ambassador in Rome, Youssef Balla.

"Algeria continues its obsessive hostility against Morocco instead of spending this effort on its internal development and working for the future of Algerian and Maghrebian generations. This would mean freeing energies and skills for the prosperity and integration of the Maghreb," Balla said in an interview with Italian news site LanuovaBQ.

In that regard, the diplomat noted that "Algeria's stubbornness in prolonging this regional dispute makes it miss opportunities," stressing that "the lack of regional integration is equivalent to at least two percentage points of regional GDP."

On the recent events in El Guerguarat, Balla said that armed militias of the polisario, supported by Algeria, had entered the Moroccan territory, and specifically in the buffer zone of El Guerguarat that the Kingdom has placed under the responsibility of the UN to ensure the ceasefire under the 1991 agreement.

"The separatists, who exploited civilians as human shields, committed acts of banditry, blocked the movement of people and goods between Morocco and Mauritania, and intimidated the military observers of the Minurso mission," he said.

"Faced with this dangerous escalation caused by the polisario militias, Morocco - in full harmony with the UN and its Secretary-General- was forced to intervene by exercising its right in an area of national sovereignty in the Moroccan Sahara," he added.

This peaceful action of the Royal Armed Forces (FAR) ended without any contact with civilians, allowing a return to normalcy of civil and commercial traffic with Mauritania, the ambassador said.

Recalling that "attacks by militias, who arrived from the Tindouf camps in Algeria, have been repeated for a long time and that Morocco has continued to denounce these incursions to the United Nations," Balla noted that at least 5 Security Council resolutions, including 2414 and 2440, condemned and forced the militias to withdraw from the area and refrain from any act threatening the security and stability of the region.

"The international community's condemnation of this dangerous action of destabilization by the polisario militias was unanimous," he went on.

In that regard, the diplomat recalled that the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, stressed the need to preserve freedom of movement and cross-border trade between Europe and Africa in the area of El Guerguarat and the fundamental importance of ensuring compliance with the ceasefire agreements in force since 1991.

Balla also recalled that the polisario is a group supported and formed by Algeria to oppose the interests of Morocco and its legitimate historical, legal and human rights regarding its sovereignty over the Sahara.

The UN Security Council resolutions, including resolution 2548 of October 30, reiterated that the political solution based on compromise is the only way to overcome this regional impasse by burying the referendum option as politically and technically impractical, he added, noting that "this is one of the reasons for the provocations" of the polisario in El Guerguarat.

"These militias have now consolidated their relations with terrorist organizations, including ISIS and Al Qaeda, engaging in drug trafficking, human trafficking and worse and turning the Tindouf camps into training camps for jihadists," Balla said.

He also referred to the fact that the EU, through the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), continues to denounce years of embezzlement of humanitarian aid, which was generously allocated by European taxpayers but ended up in the pockets of polisario executives."

The ambassador also spoke of the dramatic situation of "children and women forced to live in the camps of Tindouf, in desperate conditions and without future prospects, at the mercy of their torturers, traffickers in human beings and recruiters for the market of jihadist terrorism."