Morocco requests official response from Algeria on King’s initiative

Rabat says it is open, optimistic about future of relations with Algiers following Moroccan FM’s meeting with Algerian ambassador to Morocco.

CASABLANCA - Morocco requested official response from Algeria following Moroccan King Mohammed VI’s call for an open and frank dialogue with the neighbouring country.

Morocco said it was "open" and "optimistic" about the future of relations with Algeria, following a meeting between Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita and the Algerian ambassador to Morocco in Rabat.

The meeting took place a few days after the Moroccan monarch’s speech to mark the 43rd anniversary of the Green March during which he called for "direct and frank" dialogue with Algeria.

The North African kingdom tried a series of formal and informal approaches for ten days, to establish contact with Algerian authorities at a ministerial level, but in vain.

Rabat reiterated its request to Algerian authorities "to make officially known their reaction to the Royal initiative for the establishment of a bilateral political mechanism for dialogue and consultation," said the foreign ministry in a statement.

“This initiative stems from a sincere desire to create a framework of direct and inclusive bilateral dialogue, to iron out all the differences between the two countries, to revive their cooperation and to work together on regional and transnational challenges," it added.

Rabat also claims to have taken note of the letter of the Secretary-General of the Arab Maghreb Union (UMA), dated 23 November, informing the Tunisian and Algerian demands for a meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the UMA.

Morocco stressed however that the Algerian demand was unrelated to the Royal Initiative.

“This is purely bilateral, while the Algerian approach is part of the revival of regional construction," said the foreign ministry.