Closer Morocco-Israel ties hinge on Sahara, Jerusalem Post
Israel has to openly recognize Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara territory in order to upgrade its ties with Rabat following the resumption of ties in the wake of Abraham accords, wrote Ilan Berman on the Jerusalem post.
Morocco and Israel resumed their diplomatic ties in late 2020 after a trilateral deal that included the US recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara.
Israel has kept ambiguity on the Sahara issue with some members of the cabinet voicing support for Morocco’s sovereignty over the territory while others maintained support for a vague UN solution.
“The disposition of Western Sahara isn’t a governmental project but an issue that sits at the very heart of Morocco’s national identity,” wrote Berman, the senior vice president of the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington.
“Recognizing Moroccan sovereignty over the Sahara seems like a very good place to start,” he said.
Israel’s recognition of Morocco’s territorial integrity would yield “tremendous benefits, facilitating greater collaboration between the two countries on issues ranging from food insecurity in Africa to Iran’s inroads into the continent,” he added.
After highlighting the centrality of the Sahara to the whole Moroccan people, Berman explained that the territorial issue is a key metric of the health of Morocco’s bilateral relationships.