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Algeria official: Morocco carrying out acts of war and targeting civilians with advanced weapons

A picture taken from the Moroccan region of Oujda shows Algerian border guards patrolling along the border with Morocco on November 4, 2021 [FADEL SENNA/AFP via Getty Images]
A picture taken from the Moroccan region of Oujda shows Algerian border guards patrolling along the border with Morocco on November 4, 2021 [FADEL SENNA/AFP via Getty Images]

A senior official in the Algerian Foreign Ministry accused Morocco, on Sunday, of "killing" civilians "beyond recognised international borders" by using "advanced weapons", in reference to a drone attack in the disputed Western Sahara.

The Special Envoy in charge of the issue of Western Sahara and the Maghreb countries in the Algerian Foreign Ministry, Amar Belani, stressed that the Moroccan authorities "are carrying out acts of war east of the berm and committing extrajudicial killings targeting civilians using advanced weapons."

A Sahara news website close to the Polisario Front (Popular Front for the Liberation of Saguia el Hamra and Rio Oro) published a week ago the news about a drone attack that targeted a Sahrawi family while they were travelling in a civilian car, which resulted in the death of a man and wounding a child.

This information was confirmed to AFP by security expert, Akram Khareef from the "Menadefence" website specialised in security and defence news.

Western Sahara, which is the matter of conflict between Morocco and the Algerian-backed Polisario Front, is classified by the United Nations among "Non-Self-Governing Territories".

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Rabat, which controls nearly 80 per cent of the territory of this vast desert region, has launched, in recent years, major development projects in it, and is proposing to grant it autonomy under its sovereignty.

As for the Polisario Front, it calls for a referendum for self-determination under the supervision of the United Nations, which was decided upon after the ceasefire agreement that was signed between the Kingdom and the Front in September 1991.

In a statement carried out by the Algerian News Agency, Belani added that Morocco "violates daily the military agreements between the two parties to the conflict, which were approved by the UN Security Council."

In the middle of the month, the new UN Envoy for Western Sahara, Staffan de Mistura, made his first visit to the region with the aim of "rebirth of the political path (to resolve the conflict), which is facing an impasse," as he said.

After de Mistura's tour, which led him to Morocco and the Sahrawi camps, then Mauritania and finally Algeria, UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, called on Morocco and the Polisario Front to show a "stronger interest in resolving the problem" of Western Sahara and "not only to maintain a process without end and without hope for a solution."

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