Chile’s New President Reiterates Support for Morocco’s Sovereignty over Sahara

Newly elected president of Chile Sebastián Piñera reaffirmed his country’s position in support of Morocco’s territorial integrity and sovereignty over the Sahara

Speaking on the sidelines of his investiture ceremony to Speaker of Morocco’s Lower House Habib El Malki, Piñera stressed that supporting Morocco’s territorial integrity is an unwavering commitment in Chile’s foreign policy.

Regarding trade and economic cooperation, the Chilean president-elect said there are important areas for fruitful and effective partnership between the two countries, notably in the agricultural and tourism sectors.

Piñera, who commended the leadership of Morocco in renewable energy, also expressed his country’s willingness to take advantage of the kingdom’s experience in this area.

He also highlighted the important role played by the Mohammed VI Cultural Center for the dialogue of civilizations since it opened in the city of Coquimbo in 2007.

Last January, the Chilean parliament adopted with a sweeping majority a resolution supporting Morocco’s initiative to grant the Sahara a substantive autonomy.

Sixty-six Chilean MPs voted in favor, 11 against and 22 abstained. This outspoken support for the autonomy initiative, which Morocco presented to the UN in 2007 as a lasting solution to the Sahara dispute, is reflective of a steady Chilean position in favor of Morocco’s territorial integrity.

The Chilean executive has always backed Morocco’s stance on the regional dispute over the Sahara and the adoption by the Chilean Parliament of this resolution of support adds to the credibility of Morocco’s autonomy initiative and puts a nail in the coffin of the Polisario, which has campaigned for the Algerian-nurtured separatist thesis in Latin America for decades.

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