EU should share Algeria's position on Western Sahara conflict

Brussels, December 08, 2016 (SPS) - Vice-Chair of the European Parliament's Delegation for relations with Maghreb countries, Maria Teresa Gimenez Barbat, said that the duty of the European Union should be to share Algeria's position on the Western Sahara, and underlined its crucial role in the stabilization of North Africa and the fight against terrorism.

"The EU's duty should be to share the same position as Algeria and defend Sahrawi people's right to decide their future," wrote recently Gimenez Barbat in the European Parliament Magazine, Opinion.

In this regard, the MEP said that "Algeria has always expressed its unconditional support to the Sahrawi people's right to self-determination and the independence of Western Sahara, which has been occupied by Morocco since 1975."

She also recalled the long-awaited referendum called for by the UN for over 25 years for the resolution of the conflict.

"Algeria is playing a key role in the stabilization of North Africa and the fight against terrorism," she said, adding that "it is a strategic partner" for the EU in various areas, including the security field.

In view of the outbreak of conflicts and changes shaking the international scene along the EU's southern borders, Gimenez Barbat underlined the need to "strengthen relations with Algeria," adding that this latter "could play a key role in the regional stability and counterterrorism cooperation."SPS