The new ambassador replaces Mohamed Ait Ouali who transferred to Algeria.
Rabat – Mohamed Hamzaoui, Morocco’s new ambassador to the UAE, is one of the 19 new heads of diplomatic missions King Mohammed VI appointed during a ministerial council on Monday, July 6.
While Hamzaoui has never worked in the UAE before, his diplomatic resume is filled with experience in Arab-speaking countries, most notably Tunisia and Palestine.
Born on April 10, 1959, the 61-year-old ambassador grew up in Fez, Morocco’s first imperial city.
After earning his high school diploma, Hamzaoui enrolled in the School of Judiciary, Economic, and Social Sciences at the Mohamed Ben Abdellah University of Fez.
His studies at the Moroccan university earned him a Licence degree—the European equivalent of a Bachelor’s—in political sciences and a Master’s degree in international relations.
Hamzaoui then flew to Toulouse, in southern France, where he enrolled in the local University of Social Sciences, earning a Master of Advanced Studies.
The Moroccan diplomat’s academic journey culminated when he earned a doctorate in political sciences from the same French university.
After finishing his studies, Hamzaoui came back to Morocco to begin a diplomatic career, joining the Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1986 as an advisor.
In 1989, the political expert became the head of the communications and media department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Two years later, in 1991, Hamzaoui had his first diplomatic experience abroad, serving as Morocco’s deputy-ambassador to Tunisia.
The Moroccan diplomat’s first experience in Tunisia led him to two more positions in the North African country—deputy charge d’affaires between 1994 and 1995 and consul general between 2003 and 2007.
The first time Hamzaoui served as ambassador was in 2009, when he was appointed as the head of Morocco’s diplomatic mission to Ramallah, in Palestine.
The Moroccan ambassador then spent the next decade of his career working as Morocco’s ambassador to Palestine, until the Moroccan government announced his new appointment to the UAE. In 2014, Hamzaoui also assumed the leadership of Morocco’s consular services in Palestine.
As Moroccan ambassador to the UAE, Hamzaoui will have to defend the interests of the largest Moroccan community in the Gulf, with more than 100,000 expatriates.
The ambassador is also set to begin his mission on shaky ground, as diplomatic tension between Morocco and the UAE has intensified in recent months.
Hamzaoui is set to replace Mohamed Ait Ouali who has represented Morocco in the UAE since 2011. Ait Ouali’s new assignment is to lead Morocco’s diplomatic mission in Algeria.