In his recent interview, Bourita also discussed the Western Sahara conflict, emphasizing the need to find a mutually acceptable political solution to end the conflict.
Rabat – Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Nasser Bourita has said that, at a regional level, Morocco and other parties to the conflict must move towards finding a mutually acceptable solution to end the Western Sahara conflict.
The minister said that the conflict is a “case with well-defined outlines.”
“What remains to be done is to find a final solution to this problem,” Bourita said in an interview with Italian press agency LaPressa.
He also renewed calls for Algeria to shoulder its responsibility as a party to the conflict, rather than an observer. Historically, Algeria denies its status as a significant actor in the conflict, calling itself an “observer.”
Bourita emphasized the need to bring both Algeria and the Polisario Front to join logical and pragmatic discussions. He explained that all parties need to be involved in working towards a final political solution so that “they can understand that it is time to resolve this dispute according to these parameters.”
Morocco has long emphasized that its Autonomy Plan, an initiative Morocco submitted to the UN in 2007, will offer a mutually acceptable, pragmatic, and serious solution to end the decades-long conflict.
Algeria has long claimed that the conflict should be settled between Morocco and the Polisario. The country, which hosts, finances, and backs Polisario’s separatist claims, defines itself as merely an observer, a neighbouring country witnessing the conflict, rather than as a party obliged to engage in negotiations for a political solution.
Morocco emphasizes that Algeria has a responsibility to enter into a dialogue on behalf of the Sahrawis resident in the Tindouf camps, Algeria. Morocco, who does not recognize the legitimacy of the separatist group, maintains that the Sahrawi refugees should be represented by Algeria, a legally recognized party to the conflict, during negotiations for a resolution.
In the interview, Bourita also spoke about the importance of the EU-Morocco partnership. He drew attention to the North African country’s assets which attract partners worldwide.
Through its partnerships with the EU, Morocco has managed to position itself as an important ally for theEU, the official said in an interview with Italian news agency LaPresse.
“The kingdom is geographically the closest southern Mediterranean country to Europe, with which it has relations that span half a century.”
Bourita recalled that the partnership between Morocco and the EU dates back to 1969.
Touting Morocco’s assets, the minister said that Morocco has all the assets to “position ourselves as a reliable and useful partner, which is why we do not want an unbalanced relationship with Europe.”
The official said that Morocco want a mutually beneficial bond, offering Morocco’s model and strategy to fight s worldwide phenomenons such as irregular migration and terrorism.
Morocco’s security services foiled more than 40,300 irregular migration attempts since January 2019, according to the Moroccan director of migration at the Ministry of Interior, Khalid Zerouali.
A transit country as well as a destination for migrants, Morocco has been increasing its efforts to crackdown on irregular migration networks.
“In return, Morocco can also benefit from the partnership with Europe in terms of economy to boost trade and improve integration in the European market.”
Bourita also expressed Morocco’s interest in boosting cooperation with Italy.
Bourita said that Rabat and Rome are tied by “strong friendship relations,” because of the large Moroccan community in Italy.
The minister said that the two countries share common challenges in the Mediterranean.
“ What we need today is ambition,” Bourita said as he emphasized his country’s decision to make Italy one of the top economic partners of Morocco.
“We can do so many things: Morocco, which is today a platform for foreign investment, can attract Italians, given the natural location of the Kingdom as a bridge to Africa,” he emphasized.
Bourita said that the two countries could also strengthen their relations through political dialogue as they are both facing different challenges related to terrorism and climate change.
He also recalled that Morocco’s foreign policy is based on a win-win cooperation. He said that it is based on clarity, ambition, and principles.
“King Mohammed VI’s African policy relies on a solid historical and religious link, in addition to concrete projects of South-South cooperation, development and consolidation of infrastructure,” he said, quoted by Maghreb Arab Press (MAP).