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Andreas Schieder chosen as head of the Western Sahara intergroup at the European Parliament

Austrian MEP Andreas Schieder. / DR
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The Western Sahara intergroup within the European Parliament is preparing, Friday, to elect Austrian MEP Andreas Schieder, current leader of the group of the Social Democratic Party (SPÖ), as chairman of the body, the spokesperson for the delegation of this party announced in a press release.

«The conflict in Western Sahara has lasted for more than 40 years and the Sahrawi population has lived just as long under Moroccan occupation and in intolerable humanitarian conditions», said the new president of the Western Sahara intergroup.

«The UN and the EU must no longer forget the people of Western Sahara. As president of the intergroup (...) I will work to ensure that the EU leads international efforts to resolve the conflict».

Andreas Schieder

The elected SPÖ pleads to «increase the pressure on Morocco, for example when it comes to economic aid or fishing rights». «The policy of illegal occupation and colonization must end. The UN mission, MINURSO, must be expanded for a lasting settlement of the conflict. In addition, we must finally obtain a referendum of self-determination for the Saharawi people», he added.

In December, the intergroup was shaken by the surprise resignation of its chairman, German Social Democratic MEP Joaquim Schuster. In a statement, he explained his departure came following the announcement of the end of the ceasefire by the Polisario Front, a measure he considered a «strategic error».

The Intergroup for Western Sahara includes 75 MEPs from five different political groups (EPP, S&D, Greens, Renew and Die Linke).

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