The return of Morocco to the African Union and its recent membership in the pan-African organization’s most important body, the Peace and Security Council, is vindicating the fears of the Polisario separatists and their mentor, Algeria.
As the noose tightens around the Polisario in the Tindouf camps, where combustible factors of unrest, corruption and oppression are combined with international arrest warrants against its warmonger leaders auguring an imminent implosion, the separatist leadership are hungry for imaginary victories resorting to disinformation and propaganda.
In the face of the multiple setbacks it suffered at the international stage, the Polisario is feeling the heat of Morocco’s powerful clout in Africa. The separatists and their mentor, Algeria, have long used the Peace and Security Council to undermine Morocco’s sovereignty in the Sahara, using pro-separatist terminology at odds with UN Security Council resolutions, which have never referred to Morocco as an occupant.
In the AU’s summit last January, 19 African countries submitted their reservations concerning a report by the said council. These countries representing more than the third of AU members rejected the use of separatist vocabulary and urged the report to be scrapped. Such reports will soon be a thing of the past with Morocco’s membership in the council.
After it joined the AU’s supreme decision-making body on peace and security issues, Morocco is set to act as a bulwark against any attempt to derail the Sahara issue from its UN track.
With Paul Kagamé, Rwanda’s President taking the Chairmanship of AU, the pan-African organization will stick to the path of his predecessor Alpha Condé of Guinea whose term saw Morocco’s triumphal return to the organization. To the disappointment of the Polisairo and its proponents in Africa, the Sahara is gradually being relegated and considered as an issue to be resolved under the aegis of the UN.
In the face of these stark realities, the Polisairo remains in denial. Speaking from Algiers, senior separatist official, Mohamed Salem Ould Salek, claimed that Morocco would face a military intervention by the AU if it refuses to engage in direct talks. He raised the constitutive act of the African Union, which provides for deploying the African Standby Force in the case of war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity.
Morocco rejects any direct negotiations with the Polisario and insists that talks should rather be with Algeria, which arms, funds and hosts the Polisario while nurturing the false hope of creating a phony state that will be dependent on it in Morocco’s south.