The first group of 40,000 Moroccan marchers trying to "reunite the Spanish Sahara with the motherland" made camp in the desert on Thursday (6 November) night only a few miles from formidable Spanish defence lines.
GV marchers across desert (3 shots).
GV marchers sitting down (2 shots).
GV PAN thousands of marchers settling down for night.
Lorry with King Hassan photo amongst crowd.
GV PAN helicopter overhead.
SV man sitting next to Jordanian flag.
GV & SV marchers seated on ground around fire (2 shots).
CU man making tea.
GV marchers around fires.
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Background: The first group of 40,000 Moroccan marchers trying to "reunite the Spanish Sahara with the motherland" made camp in the desert on Thursday (6 November) night only a few miles from formidable Spanish defence lines.
The first marchers - who are all unarmed - set off on Wednesday (5 November) after the Moroccan government had ignored a last minute plea for cancellation by the United Nations Security Council.
A second wave of 100,000 "peace marchers" began moving into the Spanish Sahara on Friday (7 November). Moroccan Premier Ahmed Osman who led the first marchers across the border returned to Agadir to report to King Hassan the same day.
The U.N. Security Council is particularly worried about what will happen when the marchers have reached the Spanish Foreign Legion defence lines which are guarded by more than a quarter of a mile (kilometre) of minefields. The lines are about 15 miles inside the Spanish Saharan border.
During Thursday the U.N. Security Council met again to consider the question. Reliable sources said there was a substantial measure of agreement which would deplore the march and call on Morocco "to take all appropriate steps to withdraw all the participants in the march from the territory".
Latest reports on Friday night from the north east corner of the Spanish Sahara said heavy fighting had broken out between Saharan Nationalist guerrillas and Moroccan regulars.