The head of Moroccan diplomacy, Nasser Bourita, said on Tuesday, after a meeting with his Spanish counterpart, Jose Manuel Albares, that Morocco appreciated “Madrid’s new position” on the Sahara. This position, he said, is part of an international trend to find a final solution to this “artificial” conflict.
“Morocco appreciates the position of the Kingdom of Spain on the question of the Moroccan Sahara”, declared the Minister of Foreign Affairs during a press conference in the company of Jose Manuel Albares, at the end of a bilateral meeting in sidelines of the ministerial meeting of the international coalition against ISIS, in Marrakech.
Jose Manuel Albares insisted once again, to officially affirm, during this first joint press conference since the crisis, Spain’s position regarding the Sahara. He thus declared that Madrid considers “the Moroccan proposal for autonomy as the most serious, credible and realistic basis for reaching a mutually acceptable solution within the framework of the United Nations”.
“Countries wishing to resolve the Sahara conflict are required to engage in the autonomy initiative as the only possible solution to the Sahara issue in order to put an end to the suffering of the detainees in the Tindouf camps”, which have been captives for many decades, said Nasser Bourita.
This position is in line with those of many European, Arab and African countries on the issue of the Moroccan Sahara, he underlined, indicating in passing that the diplomatic crisis between Rabat and Madrid is “finally over”.
The crisis between the two countries had lasted 10 months and was triggered following the reception by Spain last April, behind Morocco’s back, of the leader of the Sahrawi separatist militia, Brahim Ghali, who had arrived since ‘Algeria, with a fake Algerian diplomatic passport bearing the name of Mohamed Benbattouche.
“We agree that unilateral acts and crises have no place in this new stage,” noted the head of Spanish diplomacy, wanting to show that his country had understood the lesson well.
Along the same lines, Bourita affirmed that Morocco and Spain are now betting on “building exemplary relations” within the framework of a bilateral partnership which was signed during the visit of the head of the Spanish government Pedro Sanchez in Rabat where he was received by King Mohammed VI.
The talks between King Mohammed VI and Pedro Sanchez have established a new substance for the next stage of the bilateral partnership which is currently based on deep mutual respect, ambition, coordination and cooperation, explained the Moroccan official.
Confirming this new orientation in the relations between Rabat and Madrid, Jose Manuel Albares, indicated that the two parties will “take into account the mutual benefit of the two countries from positions of mutual respect”, indicating that “the agreement and the dialogue between Spain and Morocco guarantee our shared security and prosperity”.
And to add: “We can see great harmony between the two countries on issues that affect our relations”.
“We agree to elevate and further deepen our bilateral relationship,” the Spanish minister said. Spain and Morocco will deepen “even more their relations” in the new stage they have opened where there will be no unilateral acts but only an agreement, and this in all areas.
“Rabat considers Madrid as a reliable, honest and responsible partner to build an exemplary partnership based on common history, multiple interests and neighborhood”, affirmed Nasser Bourita, before maintaining that “Morocco wants to work with Spain to establish a coordination framework in the Euro-Mediterranean and African space”.
On the subject of the joint declaration published at the end of the in-depth discussions between the two countries, Nasser Bourita, considered that it opened “a new horizon for bilateral relations, and identified the measures that should be put in place. works to give a strong impetus to relations. »
And the Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that “the Moroccan side, on the basis of the instructions of King Mohammed VI, worked with all the seriousness and dedication necessary to implement the agreed measures, through a good preparation of the ‘Operation Marhaba’.
The two countries quickly resumed their joint work, and “the Moroccan-Spanish working group concluded important agreements on migration”, recalled the minister, who announced that a new group will meet to study the questions of delimitation of maritime borders and airspace, and visits to ministries, depending on the sector, will be recorded in both directions soon.
In addition, “another meeting of the working group will be held soon on the issues of culture and scientific and educational exchanges”, he indicated, stressing that “Morocco will continue to implement the elements of the joint agreement with the same logic of consultation and seriousness to achieve the vision of King Mohammed VI and Pedro Sanchez. »