Israel-Morocco peace deal: Morocco becomes 4th Arab state to normalise relations with Israel this year

Morocco is the fourth Arab nation to strike a peace deal with Israel this year, after the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Sudan. 

Israel-Morocco Peace Deal
Israel-Morocco Peace Deal

Morocco has become the latest Arab nation to normalise relations with Israel under a deal brokered with the help of the United States. 

US President Donald Trump announced the agreement through a post on Twitter. He tweeted saying, "Another HISTORIC breakthrough today! Our two GREAT friends Israel and the Kingdom of Morocco have agreed to full diplomatic relations - a massive breakthrough for peace in the Middle East!

As a part of the deal, in return, the United States has agreed to recognise Morocco's claim over the disputed Western Sahara Region, which is a subject of dispute between the nation and the Algeria-backed Polisario Front, which seeks to establish an independent state in the region. 

This makes Morocco the fourth Arab nation to strike a peace deal with Israel this year, after the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Sudan. Overall, Morocco is the sixth nation to recognise Israel, the first were Egypt and Jordan.

Israel-Morocco Peace Deal: Key Highlights 

The Israel-Morocco Peace deal will including the reopening of liaison offices in Tel Aviv and Rabat. The offices were shut down in 2000 after the Palestinian uprising. 

The deal will eventually lead to the opening up of embassies of the two nations in each other's capital cities. 

As per officials, Morocco will also allow direct flights to and from Israel for all Israelis. 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a televised address called the agreement 'historic' and thanked Morocco's king and said that the people of the two countries share a warm relationship in the modern period. 

UAE, Egypt and Bahrain issued statements welcoming the Israel-Morocco Peace deal. 

Palestine's Reaction & Morocco's statement on the Palestinian cause

Palestinian officials condemned the agreement, saying it would encourage Israel's denial of their rights. They had also condemned the earlier agreements of the Arab states with Israel, calling it a betrayal on their part to the Palestinian cause. 

In an official statement, Morocco's King agreed to the peace deal with Israel with minimal delay. However, the royal statement clarified that these measures to normalise relations with Israel do not in any manner affect Morocco's ongoing and sustained commitment to the just Palestinian cause. 

The statement added that the King had spoken with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and assured him that he would not leave his position on defending the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. The King reiterated his support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Western Sahara Dispute: What is it all about?

As a part of the Israel-Morocco Peace deal, the United States agreed to recognise Morocco's claim over Western Sahara. US President Donald Trump reaffirmed his support for Morocco's serious, credible, and realistic autonomy proposal as the only basis for a just and lasting solution to the dispute over the Western Sahara territory. 

Trump recognised Moroccan sovereignty over the entire Western Sahara territory, as per a statement by the White House.

What is the Western Sahara Dispute?

Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony, was claimed by Morocco in 1975. Since then it has been a matter of territorial dispute between Morocco and its indigenous Saharawi people, led by the pro-independence Polisario Front, which seeks to establish an independent state in the region. 

While Morocco claims the territory to have always been a part of its region, the African Union recognises it as an independent state.

The 16-year-long insurgency over the territory ended with an UN-brokered truce in 1991. A promise of an independence referendum was also made but it is yet to take place.

As per the official US statement, an independent Sahrawi State is not a realistic option for resolving the dispute and  Morocco's genuine autonomy over the region is the only feasible solution.

The United States will now open its consulate in Western Sahara as part of the Israel-Morocco deal. 

Polisario Front's Reaction

Polisario Front's representative to the UN, Sidi Omar said Western Sahara's legal status is determined by international law and UN resolutions. The group's Europe representative, Oubi Bchraya, said that the change in US policy will not change an inch of the reality of the conflict and the right of the people of Western Sahara to self-determination.


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