Fez — The reasons that led to the closing of borders between Morocco and Algeria apply no more, said Saturday HM King Mohammed VI.
“There is no sensible justification for the current situation, the more so as the reasons that led to the closing of the border apply no more,” the Sovereign underlined in a speech to the Nation of the occasion of the 22nd anniversary of his accession to the throne of his glorious ancestors.
“It is my firm belief that an open border between two neighboring countries and two brotherly peoples is the norm,” the monarch said, adding that the closing of borders is incompatible with a natural right and an intrinsic legal principle, both of which are enshrined in international covenants, including the Marrakech Treaty, which is the founding text of the Arab Maghreb Union.
“That Treaty stipulates the free movement of persons, goods, services and capital between the States of the Union.”
The Sovereign, who never ceased since 2008 to stress this idea, stressed that “neither the current Algerian president, nor even his predecessor, nor I, are responsible for the decision made to close the border.”
“However, we are politically and morally responsible for its continuation – we are responsible before God, before history and before our citizens,” HM the King noted.
“I do not wish to blame or lecture anyone. In fact, we are brothers, who have been separated by an intruding entity, which should not be allowed to come between us,” the Sovereign underlined.
As for what some say, namely that opening the borders will only bring evil and problems to Algeria or to Morocco, this is simply not true, the Monarch said, adding that no one can believe such claims, especially in this age of communication and modern technology.
The closing of the border does not stop communication between the two peoples; rather, it only contributes to the closure of minds, which are swayed by the false stories spread by some media outlets, namely that Moroccans are afflicted by poverty and that they live on smuggling and drugs, the monarch pointed out.
“In fact, anyone can check for himself or herself that these allegations are simply not true. There is an Algerian community living in our country, and Algerians from Europe and also from inside Algeria who visit Morocco, who can vouch for this,” HM the King said.
“To our brothers in Algeria, I say this: Morocco will never cause you any evil or problems. Nor will my country put you in peril or under threat. That is because what affects you affects us, and what befalls you harms us,” the Sovereign added.