Rabat - Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdelkader Messahel, said during a televised interview on January 22 that “opening borders with neighboring countries is not on the Algerian agenda.”
Rabat – Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdelkader Messahel, said during a televised interview on January 22 that “opening borders with neighboring countries is not on the Algerian agenda.”
Invited to participate in “L’invité de la rédaction” on Algerian national radio, Messahel was asked by the moderator whether Algerian borders would be opened to promote trade with neighboring countries. Messahel indicated that “the problem does not arise in terms of opening or not opening the borders. There are security priorities; borders are porous and large, and they need to be monitored.”
However, according to Messahel, this does not mean that “the Algerian-Moroccan border will remain closed. But if the border is opened, we want regional integration,” he said.
He concluded by saying that in order to open borders with neighboring countries, “we must have a concrete strategy.”
Algeria’s border with Morocco was closed in 1994 following new Moroccan visa requirements for Algerian visitors in reaction to a Marrakech terrorist attack perpetrated by a group of Algerians.
Algerian Foreign Affairs Minister and former high ranking UN mediator, Lakhdar Brahimi, repeatedly expressed a desire to see Morocco and Algeria open their borders in favor of economic exchange.
He wants the two countries to “leave the Sahara issue aside in an effort to build a communal economy based on exchange within the context of improving the dynamics the Maghreb region.”