ALGIERS- The Personal Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General for Western Sahara, Staffan De Mistura, arrived, on Saturday, in the Sahrawi refugee camps, with a view to meeting the Sahrawi leadership, headed by the Sahrawi president, secretary-general of the Polisario Front, the sole and legitimate representative of the Sahrawi people, Ibrahim Ghali.
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres appointed, on October, Staffan de Mistura of Italy as his Personal Envoy for Western Sahara.
The new Personal Envoy succeeds Horst Köhler of Germany, who completed his assignment on 22 May 2019 and to whom the Secretary‑General is grateful for his steadfast and intensive efforts which laid the foundation for a new momentum in the political process on Western Sahara.
Mr. de Mistura brings more than 40 years of experience in diplomacy and political affairs. During his career with the United Nations, he served as Special Envoy of the Secretary‑General for Syria, providing good offices aimed at promoting a peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis. Prior appointments include Special Representative of the Secretary‑General for Afghanistan and for Iraq, Personal Representative of the Secretary‑General for Southern Lebanon and Director of the United Nations Information Centre in Rome. He also served the Organization in various posts in Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Viet Nam and the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, among others.
In addition to his service with the United Nations, he was appointed Undersecretary of State for Foreign Affairs and thereafter Deputy Foreign Minister in Italy.