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UN- Sahara : Staffan de Mistura tipped to replace Horst Kohler

Staffan de Mistura. / DR
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The former UN envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura, between 2014 to 2019, is reportedly expected to become the new personal envoy for Western Sahara, media close to the Polisario revealed.

The online publication even claims that Morocco and the movement of Brahim Ghali «have approved» the candidacy of the 74-year-old diplomat. De Mistura is used to the conflicts tearing the Arab-Muslim region apart. He was representative of the UN Secretary General in Iraq (2007-2009) and Afghanistan (2010-2011) as well as in South Lebanon (2001-2004).

The appointment of a successor to the German Hosrt Kohler was well behind schedule, as the post has been vacant since May 2019. During this period, the candidates proposed by the UN were rejected by one of the parties involved in the conflict.

In a letter sent to members of the Security Council on April 20, Ambassador Omar Hilale said that the kingdom «promptly accepted the proposals of the UN Secretary-General for the appointments, first of all, of the former Romanian Prime Minister, Petre Roman, in December 2020, and subsequently, of the former Portuguese Foreign Minister, Luis Amado, last month».

In a meeting held earlier in April, the UN Security Council members called for the appointment as soon as possible of a new envoy for Western Sahara.

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