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Germany backs Moroccan sovereignty over the Sahara

The German president sends a message to Mohamed VI in a new sign of thaw by supporting the Moroccan plan for the Sahara and invites him to visit Germany.
The German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier

 -   The German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier

The German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, sent Wednesday a message to the king of Mohamed VI of Morocco in which he considered the Moroccan proposal for autonomy as a "good basis" to resolve the conflict in Western Sahara, in a new sign of diplomatic thaw after more than eight months of bilateral crisis.

In the message, published in a Royal Cabinet communiqué released by the official Moroccan agency MAP, the German president congratulated the monarch on the new year, praised the reforms undertaken in the country and invited him to visit Germany "to seal a new partnership".

"Germany considers the autonomy plan presented in 2007 as a serious and credible effort and good basis for reaching a settlement to this regional conflict," he said.

The German president also expressed his country's support for the United Nations' efforts to reach a "just, lasting and mutually acceptable solution for all parties" on Western Sahara.

Likewise, Steinmeier expressed his "recognition of the monarch's active commitment to the peace process in Libya" and the king's efforts in his country's energy transition and in the fight against climate change and international terrorism, the same source said.

Steinmeir expressed "continued and constant support (from Germany) for Morocco's impressive development," the note said.

"Thanks to the dynamic development of your country, Morocco has become an important investment destination for German companies in Africa," the note said.

Canciller Olaf Scholz
Canciller Olaf Scholz

The crisis with Germany began last March when the Moroccan Foreign Ministry sent a letter to all members of the government ordering the suspension of any contact or relations with the German Embassy in Rabat, citing "deep misunderstandings" at the time.

Two months later, Morocco summoned its ambassador to Berlin in response to "hostile acts", after accusing the German authorities of calling into question Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara and of fighting against its regional role in the Libyan conflict.

Mohamed VI y Angela Merkel
Mohamed VI y Angela Merkel


Last month, the Moroccan Foreign Ministry announced that it would resume contact with Germany after "appreciating the positive announcements and constructive positions recently made by the new federal government of Germany" in favor of the autonomy plan proposed by Morocco.