Rabat - Morocco’s ministry of foreign affairs shared a picture showing Moroccan minister of foreign affairs and cooperation, Nasser Bourita alongside American President, Donald Trump, and his wife, Melania Trump.
Rabat – Morocco’s ministry of foreign affairs shared a picture showing Moroccan minister of foreign affairs and cooperation, Nasser Bourita alongside American President, Donald Trump, and his wife, Melania Trump.
The picture was taken following a UN meeting about drug trafficking entitled “Global call to action on the world drug problem.” This is the first official picture of a Moroccan minister with President Trump since he took office on January 20, 2017.
It is unclear whether the Moroccan ministry of foreign affairs had scheduled a meeting with the American President. Regardless of the length or formality of the meeting between the Moroccan official and the US President, it takes a special significance for Moroccan public opinion, since it comes on the eve of Security Council meeting devoted to Western Sahara.
Rencontre de M. #Nasser_Bourita avec le President des #ÉtatsUnis, M. #Donald_Trump, à l’issue de la conférence sur la lutte anti drogue dans le monde intitulée : “Global call to action on the world drug problem”.#Maroc #USA #MAECI #UNGA73 pic.twitter.com/5RGrJbfMMn
— MAECI Maroc ?? (@MarocDiplomatie) September 27, 2018
Many Moroccans fear that the appointment of John Bolton as Trump’s national security adviser might cause a change in the US position towards the conflict. John Bolton for holding the UN in high esteem and for being an advocate for terminating many of the UN peacekeeping missions, including the Mission in Western Sahara, known as MINURSO.
Analysts believe that regardless of Bolton’s past positions about the Sahara and his support for the holding of a referendum to determine the fate of Western Sahara, he cannot impose his personal views on the US administration to detriment of U.S shared strategic interests with Morocco.
Morocco enjoys strong political, economic and military ties with Morocco and enjoys wide support among many members of Congress. Morocco is among the rare countries in the world and in the MENA region that signed a Free Trade Agreement with the US. He also among the few countries that Washington consider major non-NATO allies.
Morocco is also a major US partner in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism. In its latest country report on terrorism released earlier this month, the US Department of State praised Morocco’s efforts to combat terrorism globally and its coordination with the United States.