Rabat - The Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jose Manuel Albares, has commented again on the absence of the Moroccan ambassador to Spain from her posting in Madrid.
In an interview with Spanish news outlet ElDiario, Albares dedicated a long passage to bilateral relations between Spain and Morocco.
Among the questions the chief of Spanish diplomacy answered were those asking Albares whether he expects the Moroccan ambassador to Spain to return to Madrid soon.
In response, the Spanish FM said, “It is an answer and a decision that only Moroccans can give.”
He added, “The Moroccan embassy in Spain is open and there is a charge d'affaires in charge of it. Of course I would like the Moroccan ambassador to return, but the relationship between the Spanish Foreign Minister and the Moroccan Embassy here and their charge d'affaires is very fluid.”
Karima Benyaich, Morocco’s envoy to Spain, returned to Rabat for consultations last year a few months after the Spanish government allowed Polisario leader Brahim Ghali to enter its territory.
Ghali used a fake name and identity to enter Spain for hospitalization in April, a situation that created an unprecedented crisis between Morocco and Spain.
In addition, Albares also commented on Spain’s cooperation with Morocco and the current state of diplomatic ties between the two countries.
The Spanish FM said the two countries are building a 21st century relationship, noting: “We are looking to the future. The relationship between Spain and Morocco is a rich and complex relationship in the best sense of the world, with a network of interests and different aspects that we have to advance.”
Albares recalled King Mohammed VI’s speech in August, saying that it “is rare for the monarch of Morocco to mention a specific country in his speeches and he does not speak very often either.”
In the speech, the monarch said he was personally monitoring the state of Spain-Morocco cooperation and that he hoped to see improvement in relations between the two countries.
The Spanish government expressed satisfaction with the monarch’s position, increasing attempts to restore Madrid-Rabat cooperation after the Brahim Ghali episode.
Albares said the King is encouraging dialogue between the two countries to restore normalcy to their bilateral ties.
Regarding irregular migration cooperation, Albares asserted that he wants more collaboration with Morocco in the field.
He praised Morocco's role in channeling irregular migratory flows, adding that only in the Christmas period, in a period of about 15 days, more than 1,000 people were prevented from jumping over the fences of Ceuta and Melilla.”
The Spanish official said that it would be very difficult to achieve such an outcome without Morocco’s collaboration.
“That is what makes it a strategic partner for Spain and also for Europe. Obviously I am not satisfied with that, but I want to go further. And I understand that Morocco is also in that line,” he said.
Source: Morocco World News.