Rabat – Morocco’s Minister of Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit, met Colin Stewart, UN’s Special Representative and Head of MINURSO earlier today, January 12. Laftit reiterated Morocco’s warning over the Polisario’s repeated illegal maneuvers in the restricted buffer zone of Guerguerat.Laftit also reasserted Morocco’s commitment to support the MINURSO in fulfilling its mandate, emphasizing that Polisario’s activities could undermine peace and security in the region and hinder the negotiation process to reach a consensual solution to end the four-decade-long conflict over the Western Sahara.Stewart, recently appointed to the MINURSO role, acknowledged the warm welcome and desire to work together. He reiterated his commitment to continuing efforts to comply with military agreements and return to the status quo in Guerguerat Region, in accordance with the UN Secretary-General’s call on January 6, 2018, reported Maghreb Arab Press (MAP). The meeting comes just days after a warning letter issued by Antonio Guterres, UN’s Secretary-General, urging the Polisario to ease tension and avoid further escalation in the region. Guterres ordered the separatist front to comply with international regulations and to “avoid any operation likely to change status quo of that area”.The UN top official repeated his steady commitment to relaunch the political process of dialogue between Morocco and Polisario over the Western Sahara conflict.Guterres’ new warning message came after his official statement issued on Saturday, January 6, when he expressed his deep concern over rising tensions near Guerguerat.Guterres statement and his new letter followed a series of illegal maneuvers carried out by Polisario in the region. Members of the Polisario Front have been blocking trucks registered in Morocco from crossing the Moroccan-Mauritanian border.Stewart arrived in Laayoun on December 28 to his office at the Headquarters of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara. Today’s meeting was marked by the attendance of the Governor in charge of Coordination with the Minurso, Hamid Barez, and the UNSG special representative’s adviser Alexander Ivanko.
“You’re guilty until you’re proved innocent. That’s totally the opposite from England and it’s very difficult to prove you’re innocent in another country, another language. “Most people in England don’t believe it. I didn’t do it – move on. “It’s a cross I have to bear, right or wrong, good or bad. I have to live with it.”Asked About Ms Claire’s comment, he said: “I don’t care a toss about her, love. “It was 25 years ago so you can take your political nature and do whatever you want with it. “I couldn’t give a toss.”An investigation by the Telegraph in 2015 uncovered fresh evidence that suggested Sir Geoffrey was wrongly convicted. Sue Sims-Steward, a friend of Ms Moore, said she was phoned by the cricketer’s partner, who admitted the injury she would later blame on him occurred when she slipped on a marble floor. Lawyers for Sir Geoffrey also described being contacted by representatives of Ms Moore asking if he would pay her off. Ms Moore stood by her account when approached at the time by the Telegraph. Whitehall officials reportedly blocked efforts to award Sir Geoffrey a knighthood due to his conviction. He added: “It’s a court case in France where you’re guilty, which is one reason I don’t vote to remain in the EU. Sir Geoffrey Boycott has claimed he could not “give a toss” about criticism of his knighthood after campaigners suggested it was not fitting for a man convicted of domestic violence. The celebrated cricketer, now 78, was knighted in Theresa May’s resignation honours list for his services to sport, after the former Prime Minister famously compared her approach to Brexit negotiations to his batting style.The domestic violence charity Women’s Aid responded to news of the honour by highlighting his 1998 conviction in a French court for an attack on his then girlfriend, Margaret Moore. Adina Claire, the co-acting chief executive of the charity, said bestowing a knighthood on someone convicted of assaulting their partner “sends a dangerous message – that domestic abuse is not taken seriously as a crime”. It has previously been suggested the prolific batsman was not considered for a knighthood due to the offence. Questions have similarly been raised about whether he was wrongfully convicted.Sir Geoffrey remained defiant as he was questioned about the court case on Tuesday morning, claiming it had spurred him towards voting Brexit in 2016. Questioned about his suitability for a knighthood on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, he told presenter Martha Kearney: “25 years ago, love, in a French court.” “I couldn’t give a toss”Newly knighted @GeoffreyBoycott responds to criticism by Women’s Aid over a conviction for domestic abuse in 1998. He has always denied the assault, and told #r4Today: “I’m clear in my mind that it’s not true”@MarthaKearney | https://t.co/NqPZQpkPd3 pic.twitter.com/pFUQ7xpnWq— BBC Radio 4 Today (@BBCr4today) September 10, 2019 The resignation honour’s list is not subjected to the same process of scrutiny by the Honours Committee or the House of Lords Appointments Commission, however. The outgoing Prime Minister makes their nominations which is then passed the Queen for her approval, with the Cabinet Office only performing more basic “propriety checks”.Mrs May has been criticised for gearing her resignation honours list towards former aides and figures like Sir Geoffrey, of whom she is a great admirer. The former Tory leader is an avid follower of cricket and spent her first day after leaving office watching England play at Lord’s.She said in 2018, while facing questions about her approach to Brexit negotiations: “Can I just say that you might recall from previous comments I have made about cricket that one of my cricket heroes was always Geoffrey Boycott. “And what did you know about Geoffrey Boycott? Geoffrey Boycott stuck to it and he got the runs in the end.”Sir Geoffrey, who was known for his conservative batting style, scored over 8,000 runs in test cricket. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.