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Morocco, Israel normalise relations after US-led deal says Trump

By Nicholas Norbrook
Posted on Thursday, 10 December 2020 18:48

King mo
King Mohammed VI, in March 2020. © MAP

Israel and Morocco have agreed to normalise diplomatic relations in a Trump-announced deal. It follows a string of recent deals struck between Arab countries and Israel in the last few months.

Israel and Morocco will reopen liaison offices in Rabat and Tel Aviv, and airlines will regain overfly rights.

The White House announced that Trump and the Moroccan King Mohammed VI agreed Morocco would “resume diplomatic relations between Morocco and Israel and expand economic and cultural cooperation to advance regional stability.”

Key to the deal was the decision by the US to recognise Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara.

“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!” Trump tweeted earlier today.

READ MORE Morocco and Western Sahara: a decades-long war of attrition

It is the fourth Arab nation to recognize Israel in as many months. The Trump administration launched the diplomatic initiative in the summer with a deal between the UAE and Israel.

Some analysts are less rosy about the deal, saying that in each case, the Trump administration gave away negotiating positions.

READ MORE Morocco: Yes, We Plan

These include selling F-35 fighter jets to an Arab state (the UAE), brokering billions of dollars in relief aid for Sudan, and in the case of Morocco, aligning itself with Rabat’s position on Western Sahara.

 

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