Zambia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Harry Kalaba, confirmed his statement of 9 July 2016 concerning Zambia’s withdrawal of recognition of the Sahrawi republic.
The Zambian Minister of Foreign Affairs also recalled that “Zambia supports the efforts of the United Nations to reach a final solution to the regional dispute over Western Sahara,” stressing that “Zambia is indeed anxious to contribute Constructive, to these efforts, through a position of neutrality open to the stakeholders and now an active dialogue “.
“So I reaffirm the position of Zambia,” said Kalaba, affirming that his country “considers that the return of Morocco to the African Union is an opportunity for the continental family to bring this question towards an amicable solution in the African spirit of consensus, dialogue and mutual respect “.
On February 26,2017, Morocco announced the withdrawal of its forces from a U.N. buffer zone in the disputed Sahara territory, where for months they had been in a standoff with troops from the Polisario movement.
The move took place days after a phone call between Morocco’s King Mohammed VI and U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres, and will reduce military tensions in Guerguerat, a remote area in Western Sahara near Mauritania.
The Moroccan Foreign Ministry said in a statement, that King Mohammed had ordered “a unilateral withdrawal from the zone” in conformation with the U.N. Secretary General’s recommendations.
The spokesman for the U.N. Secretary General had also released a statement calling on all parties to “unconditionally withdraw all armed elements from the Buffer Strip as soon as possible”.