Morocco and Israel will soon establish liaison offices

According to the outgoing U.S. ambassador to Morocco
The national flags of Israel and Morocco are projected on the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem

AP/MAYA ALLERUZZO  -   The national flags of Israel and Morocco are projected on the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem

The outgoing U.S. Ambassador to Morocco, David Fischer, announced that the North African nation and Israel will soon open liaison offices in both countries. The US representative pointed out this circumstance during a press conference held on Monday in Rabat that marked the process of the end of his diplomatic mission, which will end in a few days.  

The US diplomat said that the Alaouite kingdom and the Israeli state reopened commercial offices as a previous step to establish even embassies, something that will come as soon as the administrative and diplomatic procedures are completed.  

All of this comes after the latest diplomatic advances made by the United States Government of Donald Trump which recognized the sovereignty of Morocco over Western Sahara and the North African country established relations with Israel; within the strategy carried out by the outgoing president of the United States to normalize relations between the Israeli state and various Arab nations in an attempt to work towards the pacification of the Middle East.  

The first major step was taken through the Abraham Accords, under which the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain established diplomatic ties with Israel, something only Egypt and Jordan had done in the past within the Arab sphere. Subsequently, Sudan would join the initiative to establish relations with the Jewish country. All aimed at solving the conflict in the Middle East region, which had been entrenched for decades and with problems to be resolved such as the Palestinian question.  

After these movements, important support arrived for Morocco, recognizing the formula of autonomy for Western Sahara under Moroccan sovereignty as the only possible way to resolve the Saharan conflict. This was represented by the opening of Consulates by countries such as the Emirates or the United States in cities such as Dakhla or El Ayoun. This weekend, a virtual international conference was even held, organized by Morocco and the United States, in which dozens of countries endorsed their support for the Alaouite kingdom in the question of Western Sahara, a subject on which the position of the Polisario Front regarding a referendum on independence is practically ruled out without any support in the international concert.  

Among his last declarations, the outgoing US ambassador to Morocco, David Fischer, said he was confident “as to the future of Moroccan-American relations”, deeming that “they will be in safe hands”.

At last day's press conference, the US ambassador praised King Mohammed VI for having guided the friendship between the United States and Morocco towards an ever closer partnership. Indeed, the Alaouite monarch was awarded the Legion of Merit by Donald Trump's Executive for his work in establishing relations with Israel. "I would like to thank His Majesty for the foundation he created to guide the U.S.-Moroccan friendship towards an ever-closer partnership," said Fischer, whose mission to the Kingdom will end in a few days. 

El embajador de Estados Unidos en Marruecos, David T. Fischer
AFP/FADEL SENNA - The United States Ambassador to Morocco, David T. Fischer

David Fischer said he was confident that under the leadership of new President Joe Biden, relations between the two countries would be in good hands. “I am 100 percent sure that the incoming Biden administration will nominate a highly qualified individual to fill this ambassadorial post, someone who will build on all that we have done together, and that the United States and Morocco will grow and prosper together as we have for over two centuries,” the diplomat said. 

Touching on the recognition by the United States of the full sovereignty of Morocco over its Sahara, the diplomat said this is a “natural development” of the stances of the US administrations since the beginning of the 2000s. He recalled that the Clinton administration had initiated reflection on a solution, while the Obama administration had started to include the Sahara in the assistance program for Morocco, adding that the US decision to recognize the Moroccanness of the Sahara is thus “a completely natural development”.

Asked about the possible stance of the administration of President-elect Joe Biden regarding the Sahara issue, Fischer said he was “convinced that we will all be satisfied”. Fischer, moreover, said he was “very honored” to be the first US ambassador to visit the Moroccan Sahara, “after my government redrew our official map to recognize Morocco’s true borders.”

“We strongly support the autonomy plan, and we will work with the United Nations and all stakeholders to achieve the desired result,” said the diplomat, adding that “several countries in Europe strongly believe that the United States and the UN will eventually find a solution” to the Moroccan Sahara issue.

Regarding Moroccan-Israeli relations, Fischer said that the latest developments in this direction “are the result of long-term work”, adding that the teams of the two countries are working hard for the opening of the respective embassies once the administrative and legislative formalities have been completed.

The diplomat also stressed that the Israeli-Palestinian issue must be approached “with great tact”. “Everyone agrees to support the two-state solution to move forward. We are eager to see progress in this direction, and to explore new ideas, and we support the United Nations in these processes,” Fischer said, in the words of The North Africa Post.