The Ivorian decision reflects the growing international support for Morocco’s territorial integrity.
The Ivorian minister council “adopted a decree for the creation of a general consulate of the Cote d’Ivoire Republic in Laayoune, Morocco,” said the official in a press conference, following a meeting in the city of Abidjan.
“This move aims to bring consular administration closer to Ivorian expats living in southern Morocco, and to strengthen their consular protection,” he added.
The new consulate would also boost the ties of friendship and cooperation between Morocco and Cote d’Ivoire, Toure underlined.
Cote d’Ivoire is one of Morocco’s most important partners in West Africa, and in the whole continent, with their cooperation covering several fields.
The projects include the rehabilitation of the commercial Cocody Bay and work on the 25,000-square-meter Mohammed VI mosque in Abidjan, among other infrastructure projects.
In June 2019, Cote d’Ivoire opened an honorary consulate in Laayoune to promote diplomatic ties with Morocco.
The opening of a new general consulate would not only strengthen bilateral cooperation between the two countries but also consolidate the growing support for Morocco on the Western Sahara question.
In recent weeks, several African states have decided to open general consulates in the Moroccan cities of Laayoune and Dakhla.
The consulates’ opening represents “a political and diplomatic gesture that has a strong symbolic significance,” said Morocco’s Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita at a press conference.
The consulates reinforce “the reality that the Sahara is Moroccan by law, by history, by the will of its population, and by the support of the international community and friends of Morocco,” he added.