Why does the Polisario clench onto the status quo?

The scandal ridden Polisario has added a new feat to its appalling record.

While the populations living in the Polisario-run Tindouf camps are starving, leaders of the separatist front are misusing the windfall of international assistance to entertain their supporters, as they did earlier this week when they hosted a drunken party for their sympathizers in Brussels.

Members of a Belgium-based pro-Polisario association and Polisario activists and supporters were photographed during a meeting organized on the occasion of the anniversary of the so-called Sahrawi Republic “SADR”.

Pictures of the party, showing bottles of costly alcoholic beverages, were circulated on social networks.

Given the many scandals of humanitarian aid diversion and embezzlement involving chiefs and dignitaries of the Polisario, observers are finally starting to understand why the Polisario and its unmovable leader, Mohamed Abdelaziz, continue to cling to the status quo and reject any consensual settlement of the Western Sahara issue.

Supported by Algeria, whose main concern is the fulfilment of its hegemonic ambitions and leadership in the region, the Polisario leadership has not changed its position and still claims the holding of a self-determination referendum.

The advocates of separatism know that the referendum option is obsolete and deemed unworkable, as it is no longer mentioned at the level of the United Nations, the Security Council, or the European Union. Only an insignificant number of personalities and NGOs continue to support the thesis of the Algeria-backed Polisario.

Yet, as long as international assistance continues to fill their bank accounts, the Polisario leaders spare no effort to block any definitive solution to the territorial dispute that has been going on for almost forty years.

The Algerian regime also seeks to perpetuate this conflict to serve its own geo-strategic goals and harm Morocco, its N° 1 opponent in the Maghreb region.

The new scandal in Brussels adds to the large-scale embezzlement of European humanitarian aid, revealed earlier this year by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF.)

The pictures of the Brussels drunken meeting showing bottles of wine, vodka and whiskey while thousands of refugees crowded in the Tindouf camps in the Algerian desert are starving are shocking, and this is the least one can say.

However, this explains why the Algerian regime and the Polisario leaders want so badly to maintain the status quo. Both have an interest in the kind of situation.

Abdelhak El Fadli