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Podemos’ Pleas-in Pro-Polisario Letter To Biden Go Unanswered

Spanish politicians from the Podemos party sent a letter supportive of Polisario to Biden prior to his inauguration urging him to reverse US policy on Western Sahara

The Polisario Front’s allies in Spanish political party Podemos appear to have not had any response to a letter they have sent to Joe Biden in January, urging to change the new US policy on Western Sahara.

The letter was authored by several Spanish politicians and called for a reversal of the US’ recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara. Signees of the letter included Podemos MPs Lucia Munoz, Antón-Gómez Reino and Joan Josep Nuet, a member of the Congress of Deputies who was involved with the Catalunian independence movement.

Two weeks have gone by since the sending of the letter on January 14, and Washington is yet to reveal any of its exact plans for Western Sahara. 

A week after the letter was sent, the newly sworn-in Biden administration announced it would uphold Israel’s agreements to normalize relations and promised to be “building on its success.” The Polisario and its allies will be well aware of the fact that the US’ Western Sahara proclamation came as part of Morocco’s “normalization” agreement with Israel.

Quest for media attention

Ever since the new US administration made clear its support for Israel’s normalization deals, the Polisario and its aligned activists have been stepping up their quest for media attention. Polisario’s “Sahrawi cause” has again employed one of the world’s worst war-mongers, John Bolton, as its spokesman. 

With Biden apparently ignoring the letter from its Spanish allies, the Polisario also got climate change denier James Inhofe to bring up the issue at a hearing as part of the swearing-in of new US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.

The separatist front appears to be employing all its allies, networks and resources to persuade, or attract the attention of Biden, who appears preoccupied by domestic challenges.

Not surprisingly, countries that see themselves as rivals to Morocco have again come out in support of Polisario’s positions. Even as Biden has suggested that he will go ahead with the US’ recent proclamation on Western Sahara, pro-Polisario activists in Europe and the US are still desperately trying to push the issue back to Biden’s attention.

On January 24, Polisario representatives in France took an altogether more confrontational tone with the Biden White House. A statement by the group announced that it “expected” Biden to review Trump’s decision and take the issue to the UN.

Behind the scenes, meanwhile,  Algeria, Polisario’s main sponsor, replaced its top foreign intelligence chief with a more Polisario-minded major general. The last-resort-sounding replacement is apparently meant to assuage mounting anxieties in Algiers in the face of perceived, repeated diplomatic losses

What was in the unanswered letter?

On January 14, several Polisario-supporting Spanish politicians called on Joe Biden to reverse former-President Donald Trump’s decision on Western Sahara. The letter attempted to assure its intended recipient that it had “no intention of interfering in the sovereign decision of the United States in matters of international relations.”

But the remainder of the letter proceeded to do just that. The letter stated that the Western Sahara decision merely “coincided” with the re-establishment of ties with Israel. More problematic, however, was the Spanish politicians’ (willful?) ignorance of the case of Ceuta and Melilla as their letter called for decolonizing the “last remaining” colony in Africa. 

Polisario, the letter argued, is “the sole and legitimate representative of the Saharawi people.” It called for a referendum that the Polisario itself has repeatedly rejected when an outcome in its favor could not be guaranteed. It completely ignored Morocco’s Autonomy Plan that is supported by large swaths of the international community.

The letter further ignored the new international precedents set through repeated UN resolutions by urging Biden to revert not just Trump’s decision, but essentially overturn the last decade of diplomacy on the issue.

The letter’s authors declared that only with action on Western Sahara can Biden’s White House aspire to “play its natural role” as an “impartial facilitator” in the eyes of the Polisario leadership. Not reversing US policy in the region would fuel local tensions and threaten “European and Mediterranean security,” the letter proposed.

As of yet, there has been no response from Washington.

Source: Morocco World News

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