Belgium “deems the autonomy plan presented by Morocco in 2007 as a serious & credible effort made by the North African Kingdom and a good basis for reaching an acceptable political solution” to the Sahara conflict, said Belgian foreign minister Hadja Lahbib.
In a joint statement released after talks held Thursday in Rabat with Moroccan peer Nasser Bourita, the Belgian top diplomat reiterated her country’s long-standing support for the UN-led process to reach a just, lasting and mutually acceptable political solution by the parties to the Sahara dispute.
The two ministers stressed the exclusive role of the UN in the political process and reaffirmed their support for UN Security Council Resolution 2602, which urged the parties to the conflict to find a realistic, pragmatic and enduring political solution.
In their joint statement, Morocco and Belgium also welcomed the appointment of UN Sahara envoy Staffan de Mistura and reaffirmed their strong support for his efforts to advance the political process on the basis of the relevant UN Security Council resolution.
The support of Belgium for Morocco’s autonomy plan offered for the Sahara under its sovereignty brings up to 11 the number of European countries, including 10 from the EU, which have voiced steadfast backing to Moroccan territorial integrity.
Besides Belgium, the list of European countries which support the autonomy plan includes Spain, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Hungary, Romania, Portugal and Serbia.