Wide Angle

Morocco-Rwanda : Would Kigali freeze recognition of «SADR» ?

In five years, Rwanda and Morocco have raised the level of their coordination on African and international issues. Kigali’s support for Rabat's position was highlighted during recent talks.

Paul Kagame and King Mohammed VI. / DR
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On Monday, May 10, Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita held an online meeting with his counterparts from Rwanda, Congo and Togo. The Sahara issue was at the heart of the talks with his counterparts from Togo and Congo, two countries that, since the reign of Hassan II, have been known for their support for the kingdom's position on this issue. 

These talks come as Algeria assumes the rotating presidency of the African Union Peace and Security Council for the month of May.

During said talks, Bourita and Rwandan Foreign minister Vincent Biruta decided «to act so that each of the two countries defends the other’s mutual interests at regional, continental and international levels», reads a press release. Vincent Biruta «noted Morocco's efforts to reach a negotiated political solution to the regional dispute».

Kigali supports AU resolution 693 of 2018

The Rwandan Minister «expressed the firm support of the Republic of Rwanda within the framework and in respect of decision 693 of the Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union of July 2018» organized in Nouakchott, the same source added. A resolution which, prevents the Peace and Security Council of the African Union from examining the regional dispute and entrusts this mission to a presidential troika. 

Kigali is thus officially distancing itself from the campaign led by Algeria and certain allies of the Polisario, including Kenya and South Africa, sticking to the situation that prevailed before July 2018.

This proximity between the two countries was sealed by the visits of President Kagame, in June 2016 to Morocco, and of King Mohammed VI, in October of the same year, to Rwanda. Since then, contacts between the two leaders have continued. 

In November 2018, the two heads of state spoke on the phone. The sovereign also sent two messages to the head of state, delivered respectively in April and July 2019 by the head of government Saadeddine El Othmani and Nasser Bourita. Moreover, Morocco wishes to take part in the commemorations of Kigali of the genocide perpetrated by the Hutus against the Tutsis, during the 90s.

This year it is the president of the House of Representatives, Habib El Malki, who attended the commemoration on May 8 in the Rwandan capital. A presence welcomed, moreover, by Minister Vincent Biruta.

Kigali recognized, in 1976, the «Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic». A recognition that did not prevent the two countries from getting closer. Nevertheless, the evolution of Rwanda's position could see a change in this recognition.

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