Subject: JRH hails Saharan "heroic resistance

East Timor Nobel peace laureate hails Saharan "heroic resistance"

11/06/2002 04:01:02 BBC Monitoring International Reports

Sahara Press Service (SPS) web site in French 1639 gmt 4 Nov 02

Excerpt from report by official news agency of the Saharan Arab Democratic Republic (SPS) web site

Bergen, 4 November: The Nobel Peace Prize laureate and current foreign minister of East Timor, [Jose] Ramos Horta, has called for the implementation of the United Nations peace plan for Western Sahara, expressing his country's unconditional support for the liberation struggle of the Saharan people.

In a recorded message to the 2002 Rafto Prize ceremony, awarded to Sidi Mohammed Deddach on Sunday [3 November] at the headquarters of the Rafto Foundation [for Human Rights] in Bergen, Mr [Ramos] Horta called for "the implementation of the United Nations peace plan for Western Sahara" and saluted "the heroic resistance of the Saharan people" against Moroccan colonialism.

The Nobel laureate then expressed "his country's unconditional support for the struggle of the Saharan people", adding that he had visited Saharan refugee camps on two occasions where he witnessed at first hand "their heroic resistance and the similarity between their fight and that of the Timorese people".

He also said that the President of the [Saharan Arab Democratic] Republic [SADR] Mohamed Abdelaziz "is a friend of Timor and a respected leader, above all in Africa where the SADR, recognized by more than 70 countries around the world, is a founding member of the African Union".

Mr [Ramos] Horta also said: "The Moroccan occupation must not stop the Saharan people from enjoying their right to self-determination like the peoples of Namibia and East Timor"...

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