The attack resulted in the death of four. Police are still hunting for possible accomplices.
Rabat – Morocco’s government has condemned the “terrible attack” that caused shock and outrage across the world after gunmen opened fire and killed four people in Vienna, Austria on Monday.
Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita expressed on Tuesday sadness over the “terrible” act.
“First of all, I would like to express all the sadness we felt yesterday following the terrible attacks that struck the heart of Central Europe in Vienna,” the Moroccan FM said during the annual Mediterranean Conference of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).
He said that the North African country condemns the attack “in the strongest possible terms.”
“We stand with the Austrians in these times of pain as we oppose violence, hatred, and rejection of otherness,” Bourita said.
The Moroccan FM added that Moroccans’ hearts stand with the victims, their families, and the Austrian people.
The list of victims includes an elderly woman and man, a waitress, and a passerby.
Police shot dead one suspect who carried a rifle during the attack. He was also wearing a fake explosive belt.
Authorities in Vienna described the murders as a terror attack since the prime suspect is a known ISIS sympathizer.
The man faced a 22-month jail term in April 2019 for trying to join ISIS. He received a release in December 2019.
Police in Austria asked citizens and residents to stay home as possible suspects are still on the loose.
Beyond the Vienna attack: Ongoing concerns for Mediterranean countries
During his participation in the OSCE event, Bourita said the holding of the annual conference is a demonstration of its vitality.
“Our relationship, which dates back to the Helsinki process, has never lost its relevance,” Bourita said.
He argued that the relationship is more relevant as the conference members and the Mediterranean partners continue to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating consequences.
Boruita made his remarks at a political panel under the theme “Comprehensive response to current security challenges: Promoting security through sustainable and economic growth during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
He said that Morocco is striving to establish a strong, sustainable, and diverse partnership with its Mediterranean neighbors.
In addition to the importance of the Mediterranean, Bourita recalled Morocco’s steadfast position regarding several regional issues, including the Palestinian cause.
He said that beyond the Palesinian cause, which remains “at the heart of our region,” growing tensions and proxy wars threaten the stability and security of the Mediterranean.
The official also renewed calls for security collaboration against terror threats in the Sahel, which is home to “breeding grounds of terrorism and violent extremism.”
Morocco has always called for a shared responsibility to battle the scourge of terrorism and its roots in the Sahel, which spans the transition zone between the Sahara desert and the Sudanian Savanna.
In June, the Moroccan FM warned about the worsening situation in the region.
During the first ministerial meeting of the International Coalition for the Sahel on June 12, Bourita described the situation as deteriorating security conditions in the region amid an uptick in terror attacks, claiming thousands of lives.
The FM said that the number of people killed due to lack of security in the region has quintupled since 2016.
Moroccan officials continue to warn against the situation in the region, calling for shared responsibility with the involvement of all actors in the region and beyond to fight against terrorism.