In the letter, Ould Errachid clarifies some facts and rebuts allegations that occurred in the letter of the Algerian permanent representative at the United Nations.
Here follows the full text of the letter:
I went through the letter the Algerian permanent delegate to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary General of the United Nations - on behalf of his government, on April 24 on the occasion of the visit of Algerian Foreign Minister to New York - in response to the Secretary General's latest report on the Sahara issue, dated 19 April 2006.
In my capacity as President of the Royal Advisory Council for Sahrawi Affairs, I would like to clarify certain facts and rebut some allegations included in the said letter.
The Sahara issue was legally settled in accordance to International Law through the Madrid accord and the agreement of the parties to the conflict at that time, essentially Morocco and Spain, and in line with the repeated UN calls to the parties to initiate direct negotiations to put an end to the conflict that opposed them regarding the Sahara, as it was the case previously with the northern regions and Tangier in 1956, Tarfaya in 1958 and Sidi Ifni in 1969. Also, we consider that the Sahara problem is a Moroccan domestic dispute, which was given international dimensions for the reasons that are known to everybody, and especially to neighboring Algeria.
I was deeply shocked by the use of the expression "occupying power" by the Algerian official representative in his letter, because I consider this description to be in no way relevant to Morocco, which has never been mentioned in any of the United Nations documents as a country occupying the Sahara. In addition, I find this description incompatible with what Algeria tells its people and the rest of the world: Algeria, indeed, solemnly declares that it is not a party in the Sahara conflict, and that it considers that the conflict should be settled within the framework of the United Nations.
The Royal Advisory Council for Sahrawi Affairs seizes this opportunity to clearly and by all possible means affirm to the sisterly Algerian government that the Sahara is not an occupied territory, and that its inhabitants, whom we are honored to represent, are not subject to any form of occupation.
The letter of the Algerian delegate notes that the Security Council has approved the Baker Plan, when it was, in fact, about merely giving support under the explicit condition of agreement by the two parties, which has never been the case, since Morocco, in all its political components and particularly the Sahara population, had categorically rejected the still-born project.
The Council considers the fact that the Algerian delegate’s letter describing the approach of the report of the Secretary General as a “drift that Algeria does not and cannot, in any circumstance, back nor endorse,” to be a blatant contradiction with the stand publicly declared by Algeria.
Algeria’s sticking to a plan, which has been made obsolete by events - Algeria being the only one to require its implementation, while its inapplicability has been politically and technically proved by the United Nations itself, is both confusing and astounding, because everyone knows that the United Nations has never carried out any referendum based on identification anywhere in the world.
It is common knowledge that, if we wanted to organize a referendum based on identification and to be fair, just and free for all the tribes, as mentioned in the United Nations documents, it is necessary that the operation comprehend, demographically and geographically, parts of south-western Algeria, north-western Mauritania, and northern Mali, where most of these tribes reside. This is unworkable and objectively unacceptable.
For all these reasons, the CORCAS deems that sticking to an inapplicable plan is, in fact, a non confessed will to perpetuate the dispute and the current impasse, and an evidence to the absence of aspiration to find a lasting and realistic solution, contrary to the expectations of all Arab Maghreb peoples, who desire cooperation and concord. It also goes against the will of Sahrawis themselves, and of all those who want to put an end to this dispute and to the suffering and wrenching of families befalling the populations of Tindouf camps for more than thirty years now.