Morocco Set to Join AU’s Peace & Security Council

Morocco Set to Join AU’s Peace & Security Council

Morocco is set to be a major player within the African Union by integrating its supreme decision making body on peace and security issues: the Peace and Security Council (PSC).

Morocco’s ambition to be member of the most important body within the African Union was expressed by Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita during talks recently in Rabat with South African peer Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.

Morocco’s membership of the Council will help it avert attempts seeking to undermine its territorial integrity. The Council has long been a stronghold of Algeria where it used to pass motions prejudicial to Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara.

The Peace and Security Council is the AU’s standing decision-making body responsible for the maintenance of continental peace and security. The council 15 members are elected by the AU Executive Council on regional basis (three from Central Africa; three from East Africa; two from North Africa; three from Southern Africa; and four from West Africa).

The Council is currently chaired by Algerian Smaïl Chergui. Last March, the Council appointed Joaquin Chissano AU’s High representative for the Sahara and announced in 2017 a visit to the southern provinces, a visit that never took place.

Morocco deems that the Sahara issue is being tackled within the framework of the UN and considers that the African Union under pressure from Algeria has prejudged the outcome of negotiations by recognizing a separatist entity.

For decades, the Council has been sidelining on Algerian stands in support of the Polisario separatists. However, Morocco’s charm offensive in Africa and the increasing support base it has within the AU will surely pave the way for a volte-face of the Council’s approach on the Sahara issue.

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