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UN envoy to host meeting on Western Sahara next week

UN envoy to host meeting on Western Sahara next week

Secretary-General Kofi Annan's envoy will host a meeting in the United States next week to discuss the ongoing dispute over Western Sahara, a UN spokesman announced today.

The Secretary-General's Personal Envoy for Western Sahara, James A. Baker III, will meet with representatives of the Polisario Front and the Governments of Algeria and Mauritania in Pinedale, Wyoming, from 27 to 29 August. The encounter was organized by Mr. Baker pursuant to the provisions of Security Council Resolution 1359, the spokesman said.

That resolution backed a proposal by the Secretary-General to invite the parties to meet directly or through proximity talks under the auspices of his Personal Envoy to discuss a proposed draft Framework Agreement on the Status of Western Sahara. The Council emphasized that "engaging in these negotiations, the parties will not prejudice their final positions."

The parties were also encouraged "to negotiate any specific changes they would like to see in this proposal, as well as to discuss any other proposal for a political solution, which may be put forward by the parties, to arrive at a mutually acceptable agreement."