Morocco and US expected to discuss Western Sahara


Barbara Leaf began a visit to Morocco on August 29, to meet with Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, African cooperation and Moroccans abroad. 

Leaf, The United States’ Under Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, will meet Nasser Bourita in the North African country’s capital, Rabat. The meeting between the pair comes after Mrs. Leaf’s visit to Jordan on August 27, according to Day FR Euro, August 29. 

There is no concrete detail regarding what the US delegate will discuss with her Moroccan counterpart however, it is expected that there will be dialogue about Morocco’s sovereignty in the Western Sahara region. 

Donald Trump’s administration recognised Morocco’s sovereignty over the disputed territory of the Western Sahara as part of the Morocco-Israel deal. 

The former US President is the presumptive Republican nominee, despite his array of legal woes, and it is expected that he will face a runoff with President Joe Biden in 2024 in what would be a repeat of the 2020 Presidential race. 

It is most likely that Leaf and Bourita will discuss the reorganisation of the second meeting of the Negev Forum, which was originally expected to be hosted in Morocco but has faced multiple postponements.  

The first summit took place on 27-28 March 2022 in Sde Boker, the Negev desert based in southern Israel, where the Middle Eastern country’s foreign minister, Yair Lapid, welcomed foreign ministers from Egypt, Morocco, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain. 

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken was also present at last year’s meeting. 

The Negev Forum , expected to take place in June, faced a fourth postponement in June at Rabat’s request as the forum would have been taking place during the Eid al-Adha holiday. 

The summit was moved to July however, Mr. Bourita announced that it would be postponed again due to political conditions linked to the issue of Palestine and Israel. 

During her meeting with Jordanian Foreign Minister two days previously, Ayman Al Safadin, the two mostly discussed the Syrian crisis and the Palestinian cause. 

Palestine remains an important issue on the minds of Middle Easterners and the global population in general as many are increasingly alarmed at Israel’s lurch to authoritarianism and the continuing illegal settlements of Israelis on the West Bank, amongst other injustices that the Palestinians are facing. 



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