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Morocco angered by Israeli Minister’s photo with the Polisario’s leader

Morocco did not hide its frustration over the Israeli senior official Ayoub Kara’s meeting with the Polisario’s leader. Responding to the official complaint issued by Morocco, the Israeli Foreign Ministry said that the meeting «did not receive official approval».

 

Ayoub Kara, the Israeli Minister of Communication with Brahim Ghali the Plisario Front leader in Ecuador./Ph. Ayoub Kara Twitter
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In May, Ayoub Kara, the Israeli Minister of Communication posted on his Twitter a photo in which he posed with Brahim Ghali, leader of the Polisario front. The infamous photo which was taken during the swearing-in ceremony of Lenin Moreno, the new president of Ecuador, has apparently angered the Kingdom. According to The Times of Israel, Morocco made an official complaint through an Israeli embassy in Europe protesting the meeting of Kara and Ghali.

Responding to the Kingdom’s protest, the Israeli Foreign Minister announced on Wednesday 21st of June that «Ayoub Kara’s meeting with the Polisario leader did not receive official approval».

«The meetings were not coordinated or approved by the Prime Minister’s Office», the Ministry insisted as reported by Channel 2, an Israeli TV station. Kara’s step was highly criticized by the Israeli Ministry’s officials who «declined to say how a minister could have attended an official function abroad without receiving a briefing beforehand», the same source states.

Tweeting the meeting

During his visit to Ecuador, the Israeli official met a number of representatives from different Arab nations. He then tweeted on his official account a photo of him shaking hands with the separatist movement’s leader with which he confused with Abdelkader Taleb Omar, the Front’s «Prime Minister».

As a response to the claim, Ayoub Kara stated that «it’s unfortunate that time and again my image as a representative of the Israeli government is tarnished, where I strive to advance peace between Israel and the Arab world».

Morocco and Israel have not had any formal relations since the outset of the second Intifada in 2000, when Morocco suspended diplomatic ties with the country. However, in accordance to The Times of Israel, «the North African state is considered one of the Arab world’s friendliest nations toward Israel». The Israeli online newspaper assures that around 45,000 Israeli tourists visit Morocco every year.