In addition to Cote d’Ivoire and Comoros, the minister said that “at least” four more African countries plan to open consulates in Morocco’s Laayoune before the end of next year.
Comoros officially opened the consulate headquarters on December 18, with an inauguration ceremony chaired by Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nasser Bourita, and his counterpart from Comoros, Souef Mohammed El Amine.
Speaking to the press, Bourita announced that at least four more African countries aim to open consulates in Laayoune before the end of next year.
Bourita announced that the city of Laayoune is set to host intense diplomatic activity during the coming months, including bilateral joint commissions between Morocco and its African partners and the Forum between Rabat and the Pacific countries.
He said that the forum aims to convene business ministers from twelve countries.
The minister also recalled Gambia’s decision to open a consulate in Dakhla.
Morocco considers both Dakhla and Laayoune as part of its sovereign territories
Bourita emphasized that the opening of the diplomatic representations in the southern provinces will “strengthen the vocation of the region as the gateway to Morocco on the African continent” in accordance with King Mohammed VI’s vision.
He explained that the consulates will work to reinforce economic and commercial exchange and cooperation between Morocco and other African countries on the continent.
Morocco’s position is non-negotiable
“The opening of the consulate is an event of great significance” as it reflects that, for Morocco, “the question of the Moroccaness of its Sahara is non-negotiable,” said Bourita.
He also emphasized the exclusivity of the UN’s efforts as the only body in qualified to resolve the regional conflict.
Bourita also argued that the consulate’s inauguration in the region constitutes the expression of the “strong” position and the constant support of the Union of the Comoros for Morocco’s position.
“We are currently witnessing positive dynamics that would strengthen the Moroccan identity of the Sahara,” said Bourita, pointing out the “important developments” have taken place over the past ten days with regard to the Western Sahara conflict.
Bourita also condemned the rumors spread by some parties about alleged hostile positions taken by certain members of the AU, as well as false rumors circulating about the new UN personal envoy.
In the past few years, Morocco has been increasing its efforts and presence at the AU to avoid the “empty chair” issue that previously allowed pro-Polisario parties to oppose Morocco’s position on the conflict.
For Bourita, another key event in recent weeks was Lesotho’s decision “to suspend all its previous decisions and statements relating to the Sahara and self-proclaimed SADR,” as well as that of “Jamaica which maintains its decision to withdraw recognition from the fake ‘SADR.’”