Second round of negotiations held in Manhasset, New York, 10-11 August

Discussions and negotiations between Morocco and the Algerian-backed Polisario resumed in New York, 10-11 August, under the auspices of the United Nations. 


Mr Peter van Walsum, the UN Secretary-General's Personal Envoy, described the parties as "continuing to negotiate in good faith" but emphasising that "appropriate consultations will be concluded at a future date and place during the next round of negotiations".  He went on to say, "I am pleased that we have managed to bring the negotiations to the point where the parties can interact with one another and express their views."  Mr van Walsum added that United Nations' experts had presented papers on specific problems, including those concerning natural resources, local administration, as well as proposing confidence-building measures for future discussion.

"ALL PARTIES RECOGNISE THAT THE STATUS QUO IS UNACCEPTABLE" according to Mr van Walsum, but although Morocco continues to "co-operate with good faith and a sincere willingness with the international community to achieve an agreement on Autonomy" for its southern provinces, as a means of finally resolving the conflict, the Polisario position was apparently "fixed" and more interested in concentrating on plans and proposals which had been shown to fail.

Observers to the Negotiations agreed that more time would be necessary to advance the discussions, but were hopeful that there would be a positive outcome to the process.
  
Mr Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary-General, commenting on the second round of negotiations between Morocco and the Polisario, said that although there was no visible progress between the parties, he "will continue to encourage the parties concerned to pursue their dialogue and his Special Envoy to faciliate the discussions".

This second round of discussions concluded with the parties agreeing to continue negotiations under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 1754 of 30 April 2007.

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