Morocco army restores calm at Guerguerat border crossing point

Road traffic through Morocco’s border with Mauritania resumes after armed forces kicked Polisario militiamen from buffer zone which is under MINURSO’s supervision.

RABAT – Morocco’s armed forces on Saturday restored calm at the Guerguerat border crossing point with Mauritania three weeks after the Algeria-backed Polisario Front blocked hundreds of trucks despite the United Nations’ call for with the separatists’ withdrawal from the buffer zone.

Road traffic between Morocco and Mauritania, through the border crossing point between Morocco and Mauritania resumed Saturday afternoon in both directions, reported the Moroccan News Agency MAP.

The Royal Armed Forces set up Friday a security cordon to ensure the flow of goods and people through the passage between Moroccan and Mauritanian after UN peacekeepers MINURSO failed to remove the Polisario militiamen from the buffer zone.

The leader of the Polisario Front said on Saturday they had ended a 29-year ceasefire with Morocco to resume its armed struggle following a border confrontation.

A collapse of the truce, which Morocco has said it intends to stick with, could reignite a long-dormant guerrilla war in the remote desert region and aggravate decades of friction between Morocco and neighbouring Algeria, which hosts the Polisario.

Rabat considers Western Sahara an integral part of Morocco and proposes autonomy for the resource-rich territory.

Several African countries and the United Arab Emirates opened their consulates in the North African Kingdom’s southern provinces as a way of backing Morocco’s territorial integrity and autonomy plan.

Their moves have dealt a heavy blow to the Polisario Front’s claim of independence, especially after several countries around the world withdrew their recognition of the so-called Sahrawi Arab Republic.