Calls mount on France’s Macron to recognize Sahara as part of Morocco
Influent members of the French political class urged Macron to recognize the Sahara as part of Morocco, following similar moves by the US and Israel.
While France has supported Morocco’s autonomy initiative, the administration of President Macron has yet to make its stand clear on the matter amid a global momentum in favor of Morocco’s territorial integrity and its autonomy initiative for the southern provinces.
So far, Paris has dragged its feet on recognizing the Sahara issue in the hope that it will improve ties with Algeria. Its hope turned to be a chimera as Algeria tilts to the Russian axis while persisting on hostility to France, going as far as introducing an anti-French stanzas in its national anthem.
In the meantime, Morocco forged ahead building alliances and partnerships elsewhere, bolstered by a growing support in the African continent and beyond for its historic rights over its Saharan provinces.
The Israeli recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara has triggered calls on Macron from influential politicians in the country including former minister Rachida Dati, who said in a tweet Morocco’s rights to its southern provinces are “unnegotiable.”
Head of Les Republicains party, Eric Ciotti, said in a tweet Macron should follow Israel’s suit.
Head of the UDI party and senator Herve Marseille said Israel’s decision “should serve to inspire France. It is urgent to mend French-Moroccan relations.”
“Israel took a strong and bold decision,” said French deputy and spokesman of the Modem (center) Bruno Fuchs, urging Macron to pull his head out of the sand and make a stand.
Pierre Henry Dumont, Deputy and spokesman for Les Republicains wondered what is France waiting for to recognize Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara. “Leading democracies took the decision, except France,” he said.
Morocco’s King Mohammed VI had said that the Sahara is the prism through which Morocco measures the sincerity of partnerships and that Morocco will not enter into an economic or commercial step that excludes the Sahara territory.