Sahara: Paris Reaffirms Clear and Constant Backing to Morocco’s Autonomy Plan

French foreign minister Stéphane Séjourné has reiterated his country’s “clear and constant” support for Morocco’s autonomy plan offered for the Sahara under its sovereignty.
At a joint press conference held Monday in Rabat following his talks with his Moroccan peer Nasser Bourita, Mr. Séjourné said the relations between Morocco and France are “unique and exceptional”, expressing Paris willingness to make a forward step in the Sahara issue, while taking into account Rabat’s position.
“The Sahara is an existential issue for Morocco and France knows it”, underlined the Minister, noting that “it is time to move forward”. He also called for a fair, lasting and pragmatic solution involving “all parties”, affirming that he is committed to reaching this goal.
The French top diplomat voiced his determination to open a new chapter in the relations between the countries and build a partnership with Morocco for the next 30 years.
Morocco has “invested heavily in the Sahara for a long time and France will accompany it in further investments”, said Mr. Séjourné, who arrived Sunday in the country.
For his part, Mr. Bourita said the Moroccan-French diplomatic ties are deeply rooted in history and based on mutual interests in various fields, stressing that France is Morocco’s distinguished partner at the political, economic and humanitarian levels.
Prior to his visit to Rabat, Séjourné told French media he will invest in improving ties with Morocco. “The Republic’s President has personally asked me to invest in French-Moroccan relations to open a new chapter in our ties. I will be committed to that,” Sejourne told Ouest-France daily.
Ties between Morocco and France worsened in the two past years against the backdrop of a series of events, notably Paris falling short of following the USA’s full recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara, manoeuvres by French MPs against Moroccan interests at the European parliament, and Macron’s Algiers tropism.
“Now, it is time to move forward. I will do everything in the upcoming weeks and months so that France and Morocco get closer,” he said, adding that his priority will be “rebuilding trust.”

About Khalid Al Mouahidi 4384 Articles
Khalid Al Mouahidi : A binational from the US and Morocco, Khalid El Mouahidi has worked for several american companies in the Maghreb Region and is currently based in Casablanca, where he is doing consulting jobs for major international companies . Khalid writes analytical pieces about economic ties between the Maghreb and the Mena Region, where he has an extensive network