The Polisario last week gave another proof of its totally flawed perception. Faithful to its tactics to proclaim imaginary diplomatic victories in the Sahara issue, declared to great trumpeting and chest beating that a “Western Sahara inter-group” was set up at the European Parliament.
The news was of course relayed by the Algerian news agency and pro-Polisario media as “a victory” while it was just a fake news.
Actually, last Thursday Feb. 13, German MEP Joachim Schuster gathered in a 20-seat meeting room, “LOW 1.1B”, at the European Parliament in Strasbourg two representatives of the polisario and a handful of parliament staffers and interns.
After short introductory remarks by the German MEP, the two Polisario members repeated their usual story, before an annoyed audience and the meeting ended with the proclamation of the setting up of an intergroup.
The intergroup, presented by the Polisario and its mentors as a pathway to reconquer the European Parliament, actually has no legal or institutional basis, nor political legitimacy. The European legislative institution explained that an intergroup is not an organ of the European Parliament and cannot speak on its behalf.
Actually, article 35 of the European Parliament’s rules of procedure notes that an intergroup is “an individual initiative of an MEP which has an unofficial character”.
The same regulations stipulate that intergroups shall not carry out activities, which could lead to a confusion with the official activities of the Parliament and its bodies or “which may affect relations with the other institutions of the Union or relations with third countries.”
An intergroup sponsors are strictly prohibited from using the name or logo of the European Parliament, or of the political groups which compose the institution.
However, all these restrictions were flouted during the meeting on February 13. The logo of the European Parliament was conspicuously displayed at the back of the room and the agenda dealt exclusively with one issue and had one sole objective: “affect relations” with a third country, in this case Morocco.
In this context, it is worth noting that these elements were explained by the President of the European Parliament David Sassoli, in a letter addressed to the Moroccan Parliament, to the president of the delegation for relations with the Maghreb countries, Andréa Cozzolino and to the EU-Morocco, EU-Tunisia and EU-Algeria joint parliamentary committees.
In his letter, Sassoli said that the European Parliament is “particularly committed to avoiding any confusion between its official activities and those of intergroups or any other unofficial grouping of MEPs.”
And so, the farce, orchestrated by the Algeria-Polisario propaganda machine, ended as it began: a flop.