U.N. Secretary-General calls for new talks over Western Sahara dispute

U.N. Secretary-General calls for new talks over Western Sahara disputeThe U.N. call for a restart to talks came after months of tensions in the disputed territory, which Morocco claims as part of its kingdom and Polisario says belongs to the Sahrawi people who fought a guerrilla war until a 1991 U.N.-backed ceasefire.

This is reported by Reuters.

U.N. attempts to broker a settlement have failed for years in the vast desert area, which has contested since 1975 when Spanish colonial powers left. Morocco claimed the territory while Polisario established its self-declared Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic there.

Since the end of fighting Western Sahara has effectively been split in two, part controlled by Morocco and part by Polisario forces, divided by a heavily mined earthen berm. Many Sahrawis live in refugee camps inside southern Algeria.

"I intend to propose that the negotiating process be relaunched with a new dynamic and a new spirit," the U.N. chief said in his report presented for review to the security council on Monday.
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