Abderrahmane Youssoufi was one of the most iconic politicians in Morocco’s modern history.
In his message, the King expressed his “deep sadness” when he “learned … the news concerning the death of the great activist, late Abderrahmane Youssoufi.”
The passing of Youssoufi is “a considerable loss, not only for his family, but also for his country, Morocco, which lost one of its most valiant men,” the message said.
“An entire section of the history of contemporary Morocco bears the mark of [Youssoufi’s] singular personality and his unique style of faithful and loyal man, clearly attached to principles and guided by an eminent sense of responsibility,” said the King.
King Mohammed VI also expressed his “heartfelt condolences and deep compassion to Helene Youssoufi and, through her, to the loved ones of the deceased, his friends, supporters, and large national political family, especially the Socialist Union of Popular Forces” (USFP), the party that Youssoufi was leading during his political career.
The deceased had “great human qualities” and “sincere patriotism that never wavered during the decades of his militant action,” the King continued, recalling Youssoufi’s sacrifices as a lawyer, human rights activist, and politician.
Youssoufi was driven by an “ardent devotion” to serve the higher interests of Morocco and he always showed an “unwavering loyalty” to the symbols and values of Morocco, the message added.
“We take the full measure of this cruel loss. We remember how the illustrious deceased had engaged, from the first hour, in the anti-colonial fight, and, with humility and abnegation, he devoted his whole life to serve his country’s sacred causes,” the royal message recalled.
Youssoufi always stood out in the exercise of his missions, such as that of prime minister in the alternation government (1998-2002), that marked the transitional period between the reign of the late King Hassan II and King Mohammed VI.
The King stressed that Youssoufi revealed his stature as a wise and experienced statesman during a historical stage in Morocco’s quest for consolidating democracy.
“Sharing your grief in these painful moments, we assure you of our continuous and benevolent solicitude and pray the Almighty to give you comfort and solace,” the message concluded.
Youssoufi is one of the most acclaimed politicians in Morocco’s modern history. Having worked closely with King Mohammed VI in the beginning of the 21st century, the two men developed a special bond.
Despite Youssoufi’s retirement from politics in 2003, King Mohammed VI continued to pay him tribute.
In 2016, the King inaugurated an avenue named after Youssoufi in Tangier, the late politician’s hometown.
In August 2019, during celebrations for the 20th anniversary of his ascension to the throne, King Mohammed VI honored Youssoufi by naming the 2019 promotion of graduating military recruits after him.
“I have decided to name this year’s Group of Graduates after Mr. Abderrahmane Youssoufi, who shares with my late father, His Majesty King Hassan II, and with me the same unwavering principles: love for the homeland and a strong commitment to the nation’s sacred values, to the Kingdom’s territorial integrity and to the defense of its best interests,” King Mohammed VI announced.
“I am proud of the solid ties and the special, mutual affection between myself and Mr. Youssoufi,” he said.
The monarch finished by calling on the recruits and on the Moroccan people to forever honor Youssoufi’s legacy, urging them “to live up to all this name stands for, namely integrity, commitment, adherence to principles and genuine patriotism.”