The Western Sahara Campaign is leading a worldwide campaign to expand the mandate of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO). As regular readers of PN know, Western Sahara has been illegally occupied by Morocco since 1975. MINURSO is a UN peacekeeping mission – the only one in the world without a mandate to monitor human rights. The UN is currently failing in its responsibility to protect the victims of this conflict, as demonstrated by the recent violence in Western Sahara [see PN 2528 - Eds]. The lack of transparency surrounding the events demonstrates an urgent need for human rights monitoring.
WSC believes that human rights monitoring by MINURSO is essential to prevent further violence and instability. The MINURSO mandate is being renewed in April, and we urge everyone to write to their MPs, the foreign secretary, and the Colombian ambassador to the UN (chair of the security council in April) to urge that MINURSO take on a human rights monitoring role.