Western Sahara: Anatomy of a Stalemate
The long-running conflict over the sovereignty of Western Sahara has involved all the states of northwest Africa and many beyond since Spain ceded the territory to Morocco and Mauritania in 1976. Erik Jensen traces the evolution of the conflict - from its colonial roots to its present manifestation as a political stalemate. Jensen reviews the history of the dispute, describes the quest by the UN and interested states to facilitate a process of self-determination through a referendum on independence vs. integration with Morocco, and explores the impasse over how to determine who should be allowed to vote in such a referendum. He then turns to the more recent efforts of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's personal envoy for Western Sahara, James Baker, to resolve the conflict. Despite Baker's 2003 peace plan, the government of Moroco and the Polisario Front remain at odds, and the stalemate continues.
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Western Sahara Independence or Integration with Morocco?
People Place and the Role of Spain
Conflict the OAU and the UN
Toward Settling the Conflict
Identification Who Has the Right to Vote?
The Process Stalls
UN Settlement Efforts Renewed
Searching for Alternatives
Identification and Registration of Voters Excerpt from Report of the Secretary General S22464 of 19 April 1991
Instructions Relating to the Tasks of the Indentification Commission Annex to Report of the SecretaryGeneral S23299 of 19 December 1991
Peace Plan for SelfDetermination of the People of Western Sahara Annex II to Report of the SecretaryGeneral S2003565 of 23 May 2003
List of Acronyms
About This Publication
The International Peace Academy
Stalemate Who Decides the Future of Western Sahara?
The Situation Concerning Western Sahara Report of the SecretaryGeneral S21360 of 18 June 1990
Security Council Resolution 658 1990
International Peace Academy Publications
19 December Abdel-Aziz accepted Africa agreed Algeria Annex appeals applicants appointed Baker Basri Boutros Boutros-Ghali Boutros-Ghali camps cease-fire census census list compromise concerned cooperation criteria current Chairman D-Day Document Driss Basri effect election eligible to vote ern Sahara fair referendum forces framework agreement Frente Polisario Ibid Identification Commission identification process included integration with Morocco issue July June King Hassan Laayoune Mauritania meeting ment Military Unit MINURSO Moroccan negotiated November October offices option oral testimony organization paragraph participate parties peace plan Perez de Cuellar personal envoy present Rabat referendum referendum campaign Referendum in Western refugees region rejected Report SADR Saharan population Sahrawi Secretary Secretary-General Secretary-General's Security Council Resolution self-determination settlement plan settlement proposals shaikhs sides Spain Spanish Sahara Special Representative subfraction talks Territory Tindouf tion transitional period tribal chiefs tribal groupings troops Unit of MINURSO United Nations Western Sahara Authority Western Sahara Conflict Yaqub-Khan Zoubir