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Ban Ki-moon arrives in Shahid El Hafed refugee camp

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Shahid El-Hafed (Refugee Camps), 6 March 2016 (SPS) - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived Saturday in Shahid El-Hafed, the second stage of his visit to Saharawi refugee camps after Smara. Ban Ki-moon was welcomed upon his arrival in Shahid El-Hafed by Saharawi Prime Minister Abdelkader Taleb Omar, before being received, for high-level discussions, with President of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), Mohamed Abdelaziz, also secretary-general of the Polisario Front. Earlier, the UN chief was in the Saharawi refugee camp of Smara,as part of his visit to the region in a bid to relaunch the process for the settlement of Western Sahara conflict, between Morocco and the Polisario Front. Ban arrived aboard a helicopter, accompanied by a UN delegation, including his special envoy to Western Sahara, Christopher Ross. Welcomed upon his arrival by local authorities in Smara, Ban Ki-moon received military honours from a detachment of the Saharawi Liberation Army. Thousands of Saharawi refugees welcomed the UN secretary general, expressing their commitment to independence and determination to exert their right to self-determination, putting the UN in front of its responsibilities over the settlement of Western Sahara conflict. (SPS) 062/090/700