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Western Sahara

Volume 467: debated on Tuesday 13 November 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to Morocco to encourage it to join a third round of talks agreed by the Polisario and Algeria on the future of the Western Sahara. (163928)

The UK fully supports the efforts of the UN Secretary-General and his Personal Envoy, Peter van Walsum, and has encouraged the parties to continue negotiations under UN auspices, as set out in UN Security Council Resolutions 1754 and 1783.

The UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1783 on 31 October, which renewed the mandate of the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara until 30 April 2008. The resolution also calls upon the parties to continue negotiations under the auspices of the Secretary-General without preconditions and in good faith.

The first two rounds of these negotiations took place in Manhasset, New York on 19-20 June and 10-11 August. The UN has not yet announced dates for a third round of negotiations.