April 1, 2023

A year has passed since the royal court published a new Spanish government decision on the Moroccan Sahara, as the chief executive in Madrid expressed support for a Moroccan autonomy proposal that violated traditional Spanish neutrality in the conflict.

Much water has gone under the bridge of Moroccan-Spanish relations following the historic message from Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, while the Spanish government continues to defend this position as reflecting “public policy” and has described the Moroccan proposal as “the most serious, credible and realistic basis” for conflict resolution.

And if Pedro Sanchez’s message revived the course of relations with Rabat, it opened another wound with Algeria. A year later, political bridges with Algeria, the main supporter of the Polisario Front, are still completely absent.

Over the past twelve months, Spanish-Moroccan relations have entered a “new and unprecedented phase” based on “mutual respect” and “trust” through which both sides hope to avoid future bilateral crises.

Analyst and international affairs expert Naufel Baamri notes that Moroccan-Spanish relations on their first anniversary coincided with the presentation by King Mohammed VI of the dossier of World Cup candidates with Spain and Portugal, “reflecting the size and strength of the relationship that binds the two countries to Portugal”.

And Baamri added: “Previous relations were managed by the leaders of the two countries, King Mohammed VI and Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, to overcome them through a dialogue led by the king, in which various contentious issues were raised, which ended with the announcement of the new position of Spain regarding Morocco, on at the top of which stands the national question; With the achievement of mutual understanding on neighborhood issues, including issues of security and illegal immigration.

The same analyst added that the recent visit of an important Spanish delegation to Morocco witnessed the signing of important economic agreements and “ended with a royal invitation to the head of the Spanish government to officially visit Morocco, according to a report published on the occasion. in April; This visit is expected to expand opportunities for cooperation and partnership, as well as highlight the brotherhood that unites the Spanish and Moroccan monarchies and the political leaders of the two countries.

The same spokesman acknowledged that “Spain’s recognition of the autonomy initiative as the only solution to end the artificial conflict over the Sahara, as well as support for the Security Council resolutions and the Staffan de Mistura mission, were considered not only an important position, but also unprecedented, and this has a political impact, like an American confession.”

Bamari further explained: “Morocco has submitted the case for the elimination of the Sahara from Spanish colonialism to the Fourth Committee and therefore the recognition of Spain will have an impact at this level in terms of not having any benefit to continue discussing the case in the committee.”

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