Boukadoum African tour: AU’s role in settling Sahrawi issue confirmed

Algiers, 18 January 2020 (SPS) – Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sabri Boukadoum made last week a tour to Africa in which a great convergence of views and positions was noted with the African leaders concerning the different regional and international issues of common interest, notably on the role of the African Union (AU) in the political settlement of the conflict of Western Sahara.

After South Africa, Lesotho and Angola, Boukadoum visited Kenya as a prelude to the 34th AU Summit that will be held in February.

The Covid-19 pandemic, the situation in the Sahel, Libya, Central Africa, Congo and Central African Republic, as well as the growing terrorism threat in the continent were at the heart of the discussions. The latest developments in Western Sahara were also the main focus of the discussions between the Algerian Foreign minister and his African interlocutors.

The minister, who started his tour in Pretoria, was received by South African Cyril Ramaphosa to whom he expressed “the firm commitment of President of the Republic Abdelmadjid Tebboune to the strengthening of the strategic partnership between the two countries and his commitment to giving a fresh impetus to the bilateral cooperation.”

For his part, Ramaphosa expressed “his willingness to work with his brother Abdelamdjid Tebboune to develop the bilateral cooperation in its political, security, economic and cultural dimensions for an optimal exploitation of the opportunities offered on both sides.”

Boukadoum and his South-African counterpart Naledi Pandor “stressed the strategic importance of the bi-national commission as a structured bilateral mechanism to coordinate and form a bilateral cooperation and a partnership between the two countries.”

Concerning the Sahrawi issue, the two sides underlined that they are seriously concerned by the escalation of the military tensions in the occupied territories and reaffirmed their position which consists in reaching a fair, lasting and mutually acceptable political solution which ensures the self-determination of Western Sahara’s people.

In this respect, Boukadoum and Pandor expressed their “full support” to the immediate appointment by UN Secretary General of his personal envoy for Western Sahara.

In Lesotho, Boukadoum was received by Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Relations Matsepo Ramakoae where they stressed the need to finalize the legal framework and give a new boost to the contacts at all levels in view of the holding of the inaugural session of the Joint Committee.

Concerning the conflict in Western Sahara, the two sides underlined the necessity for AU and UN to work together to launch a real political process enabling the completion of the decolonization process.

In Angola, Boukadaoum held a working meeting with his counterpart Antonio Tete where theur assess the bilateral cooperation and prospects of its development. They also discussed poltical, peace and security issues in Africa, notably the situations in Libya, Malia and Western Sahara.

With his Kenyan counterpart Raychelle Omamo, the minister broached the bilateral relations as well as the main tense areas in the African continent.

Concerning regional and international issues, the two ministers underlined with “satisfaction the convergence of their positions favoring the respect of the principles of the international law and the peaceful settlement of crises and conflicts. (SPS)

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