EU’s Annual report on human rights: Introducing amendment to extend MINURSO mandate

Brussels, Dec 10, 2016 (SPS) - An amendment on the restoration of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) in the fullness of its duties and the extension of its mandate to include human rights monitoring, suggested by 89 Euro-MPs, was introduced in 2015 annual report on human rights and democracy in the world and on the policy of the European Union (EU) on the matter.

In their amendment to this report which will be debated in the next session of the European Parliament, to be held as from Monday in Strasbourg (France), the European deputies “ask insistently the United Nations to ensure the full restoration of MINURSO and to endow it with a mandate in terms of human rights, like all the other UN peacekeeping missions of the world.”

The Euro-MPs reiterate, in this regard, the support for “a fair and lasting settlement of the conflict in Western Sahara on the basis of the Sahrawi people’s right to self-determination, in accordance with the United Nations’ relevant resolutions” in this matter.

The European parliamentarians also pleaded, in their amendment, for the respect of the Sahrawi people’s fundamental rights, notably their freedom of association, expression and their right to assembly.

They call, in their amendment, for the “release of all the Sahrawi political prisoners” and require that “an access to the territories of occupied Western Sahara is granted to parliamentarians, independent observers, non-governmental organizations and the press.” (SPS)