The recognition by the United States of Morocco’s full sovereignty over its Sahara enshrines Washington’s position supporting the Moroccan autonomy initiative as the only basis for a just and lasting solution to the conflict over the Sahara, said on Friday, January 15, 2021, US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, Mr. David Schenker.
Speaking at a virtual Ministerial Conference in Support of the Autonomy Initiative under Morocco Sovereignty that he co-chaired with Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans Abroad, Nasser Bourita, Schenker recalled that all US administrations, starting with that of President Bill Clinton, have expressed their support for the Moroccan autonomy initiative under Moroccan sovereignty, “which is the most realistic option for the settlement of the Sahara conflict.”
The United States calls on the parties concerned, the United Nations and the international community to “examine more seriously” the autonomy plan, which is the only credible and realistic basis for negotiations, he said.
Only political talks can lead to a settlement of this issue, said Schenker, who also called for the resumption of negotiations under the autonomy plan and the auspices of the United Nations.
The conference was an opportunity for most of the 40 participating countries to express their strong support for the Moroccan autonomy initiative as the only basis for a just and lasting solution to the Sahara regional conflict.
The participants in this conference, which was attended by 27 ministers, pledged to continue their advocacy for a solution, using Morocco’s autonomy plan as the sole framework for resolving the Sahara dispute, according to a Chairs Summary made public at the end of the event.