UN Security Council to discuss Western Sahara row

UN hopes to 'some kind of rapprochement' with Morocco

UN Security Council to discuss Western Sahara row

World Bulletin / News Desk

The UN Security Council will on Thursday try to defuse a row between Morocco and the United Nations over the disputed territory of Western Sahara, the council president said.

Angolan Ambassador Ismael Gaspar Martins said "there is a slight misunderstanding" with Morocco which has decided to reduce its contribution to the UN mission in Western Sahara, MINURSO.

"We will discuss this and we must find some kind of rapprochement," said Gaspar Martins.

Morocco has reacted angrily at UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's use of the word "occupation" to describe the status of Western Sahara.

Rabat announced that it would cut staff at the mission and threatened to pull its troops out of UN peacekeeping.

The United Nations has been trying to broker a Western Sahara settlement since 1991 after a ceasefire was reached to end a war that broke out when Morocco deployed its military in the former Spanish territory in 1975.

The UN mission based in Western Sahara, MINURSO, was set up to organize a referendum on the future of the territory, but that never materialized.

The UN chief wants to achieve progress in resolving the 40-year conflict over Western Sahara before he steps down at the end of the year.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 17 Mart 2016, 16:59