1st anniversary of President Mohamed Abdelaziz death, Sahrawis pledge to continue fight for independence

Chahid Elhafed, May 31, 2017 (SPS) - The Saharawi people commemorate today the first anniversary of the death of its martyr president, Mohamed Abdelaziz, a distinguished figure by his political career and his struggle for independence of Western Sahara, occupied by Morocco and for the inalienable right of the Sahrawi to self-determination.

The late President Abdelaziz, who was also Secretary-General of the Frente POLISARIO and a founding member of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), died on May 31, 2016, at the age of 68, following a long illness.

Following the death of El-Ouali Moustapha Sayed (one of the main founders and leaders of the Front POLISARIO), Mohamed Abdelaziz was elected Secretary General of the Front POLISARIO and Chairman of the Revolution Command Council in August 1976.

The late Abdelaziz, who was elected President of SADR for the first time in October 1982, was re-elected in 1985, 1989, 1991, 1999, 2003, 2007 and 2015, his long and rich career as a fighter for independence and for the defense of just causes, was marked by the 1984 SADR in the Organization of African Unity (OAU), currently the African Union (AU), but also by a cease-fire in 1991 and the opening of negotiations for the settlement of the conflict in Western Sahara, the last colony in Africa.

Thus, the Sahrawi  in refugee camps, in liberated or occupied territories, will remember a great man who devoted his life to the defense of their dignity and the recovery of their rights, in particular that of living in a free and sovereign State.

With the disappearance of Mohamed Abdelaziz, the Saharawi people lost a valiant militant who "made peace a strategic principle and an inescapable choice", wrote President of the Republic Abdelaziz Bouteflika in his message of condolences to the Speaker of the Sahrawi National Council Khatri Addouh, following the death of the Saharawi president.

The Saharawi people also lost in President Mohamed Abdelaziz "great support in their struggle for self-determination," said the President of the Council of the nation, Abdelkader Bensalah, also in a message of condolences sent to Khatri Addouh .

POLISARIO lamented, after the death of its Secretary General, the loss of a companion and leader "who has left an important legacy of achievements, and a firm determination to continue the struggle until 'To triumph'. SPS