The leaders of the Polisario could hardly hide their irritation when they learnt that an Algerian delegation was taking part in the 2nd Summit of Maghreban young leaders, held over the weekend in Laayoune.
The summit, organized by the Youth Union of Saqia Al Hamra and Oued Eddahab, was attended by young leaders of the five Maghreb countries (Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, and Tunisia). These youths hope to fulfil the long awaited dream of the construction of the Arab Maghreb Union (AMU), a project paralyzed since its launch on February 17, 1989 in Marrakech, mainly because of the artificial territorial conflict over the western part of the Moroccan Sahara.
A member of the Algerian delegation, Mohamed Salaheddine Madion, underlined in an address before the summit that this event brings together young people who believe in the unity of the Maghreb, a unity that can materialize through dialogue and communication.
He expressed hope that this summit would make proposals and suggest solutions to the different problems facing Maghreban youths.
The Polisario leaders perceived the presence of young Algerians in Laayoune as a stab in the back, dealt by Algeria, their main supporter in their dispute against Morocco over the Sahara.
This is indeed the first time that Algeria is represented by a delegation in an event organized in Laayoune. So far, setting food in a city of the Moroccan Sahara was considered by Algerian leaders as a red line not to cross.
One of the websites of the separatist propaganda “Futuro Sahara“, noted bitterly “it is the first time that a delegation of young Algerians participates in an event organized in the capital of the Sahara under occupation”.
The website reflects, through its article, the irritation of the Polisario leaders, who assumed that this “Algerian delegation wants to normalize ties with the occupying country”.
The Polisario leaders have thus received a second blow in less than a week, after the recent appointment by Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdelaziz of a new ambassador to Morocco, heralding the warming up of relations between the two countries.
The summit, which unfolded Saturday at the level of workshops, continued Sunday with the designation of “ambassadors of the summit”, the adoption of recommendations, the signing of the summit charter and the inauguration of a memorial dedicated to this event.
The participants visited the city’s touristic sites as well as a number of socio-economic development projects.