Convinced of the key role played by Morocco in the fight against terrorism in Europe, France, Belgium and Spain mull setting up a unified front with the North African country to counter the growing terror threats.
Morocco’s powerful intelligence agency, national police force, paramilitary police and Central Bureau of Judicial Investigations work closely with their European and American counterparts. They receive extensive training and are highly proficient.
Moroccan intelligence has even helped to avert several deadly attacks in Paris, Brussels, Madrid and other European capitals with the information it collects and shares.
Furthermore, Moroccan and Spanish security services have conducted lately joint operations that led to the dismantling of several Jihadist cells in both neighboring countries.
Following a French-Belgian meeting held Monday to discuss cooperation prospects between the two countries in the fields of security and fight against terrorism, Paris and Brussels announced their intention to work with their Spanish and Moroccan partners to launch a ministerial meeting to include the interior and justice ministers from the four countries.
According to the French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe and his Belgian counterpart Charles Michel, this ad-hoc ministerial gathering will help enhance further coordination between the four countries and foster their joint actions in the fields of terror prevention & monitoring, borders control and fight against Islamic radicalization in prison and social media.
France, Belgium and Spain host large Moroccan communities due to geographic proximity, historic and cultural reasons.
Two years ago, King Mohammed VI had urged, in his speech made on the occasion of the 63rd anniversary of the Revolution of the King and the People, Moroccans living abroad “to maintain their good reputation, to show forbearance in these trying circumstances, to close ranks and to be, as always, staunch advocates of peace, concord and co-existence in their country of residence.”
The North African country, the major ally of the West in the region, has a comprehensive counterterrorism strategy that includes vigilant security measures, regional and international cooperation, and counter-radicalization policies.