Getting Diplomacy Back on Track in Western Sahara

Polisario Front soldiers sit on a cliff in the Boujdour refugee camp, Algeria, Oct. 15, 2021 (AP photo by Bernat Armangue).
Polisario Front soldiers sit on a cliff in the Boujdour refugee camp, Algeria, Oct. 15, 2021 (AP photo by Bernat Armangue).
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After two years of diplomatic deadlock, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has appointed a new envoy for Western Sahara, a territory disputed between Morocco and the pro-independence Polisario Front, which represents the ethnic Sahrawi population of the territory. The recent designation of seasoned Italian-Swedish diplomat Staffan de Mistura marks a much-delayed and critical step forward in a standoff that, if left untreated, risks spreading instability elsewhere in the region.  The temperature has been rising of late in this often-overlooked conflict. In November 2020, fighting flared up between Morocco and the Polisario Front. A month later, President Donald Trump threw fuel on the […]

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