Mission of the Western Sahara

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Secretary-General’s remarks to press following meeting with Secretary-General of the Polisario Front (un.org)

Mohamed-Abdelaziz-y-Ban-Ki-MoonI am honored to be able to visit here today.

I had a very good meeting with Secretary-General [Mohamed] Abdelaziz and I would like to take this opportunity to express my most sincere thanks for their very kind welcome.

I have been very much moved seeing for myself what their aspirations and their challenges are.

As you know this morning, I went to Smara camp. I wanted to start my programme there by meeting with school children and representatives of young people in Smara camp.

I was most deeply moved and touched by such a warm and very passionate welcome by so many people who came out to welcome me and my delegation.

From their faces, I was able to read what they were going to tell us and I was deeply moved.

Simply because of the crowd, my convoy was not able to move. There was some issue about how to control the crowd so we had to skip the programme so I came directly from there to here to meet Secretary-General Abdelaziz.

Fortunately, I was able to meet with the representatives of the youth groups just now but I had to skip my meeting with the school children. I am very sorry for that but I am sending my best, best wishes for the their future.

What really moved and, even, saddened me was the anger. Many people expressed their anger – people who for more than forty years have lived in the harshest conditions and who feel their plight and their cause have been forgotten by the world. Understandably, they are angry.

I have assured the representatives of youth that the United Nations will do much more. First of all, to resume face-to-face dialogue and, at the same time, provide support to all refugees and people here.

Read the Statement


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