Algerian PM Accuses Morocco of Fomenting Sectarian Clashes in Ghardaia

Algerian PM Accuses Morocco of Fomenting Sectarian Clashes in Ghardaia

Algerian Prime Minister accuses Morocco of fomenting sectarian clashes between Arabs and Amazigh in Ghardaia.

In the wake of the sectarian clashes that swept the Algerian oasis city of Ghardaia last week and left at least 22 people dead and many others injured, Algerian Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal made venomous comments against Morocco, accusing the country of “funding proxy groups to foment violence and destabilize Algeria.”

During a meeting with the notables of Ghardaia (600km to the south of the capital Algiers) on Wednesday, July 8th, the Algerian PM indirectly accused Morocco of “financing his country’s enemies in an attempt to foment sectarian conflict in Algeria between Arab and Amazigh communities.”

“We know exactly [that] the source of funding of these plans come from a brotherly country and others which are not,” Sellal was quoted by news website Algérie 1 as saying. “We have the names of the leaders of ‘Fitna’ (sedition) and those young people they want to manipulate.”

The comments of the Algerian Prime Minister come shortly after Algerian Television Annahar had claimed that a “thorough and careful” investigation launched into the violent clashes in Ghardaia and nearby cities of M’Zab Valley has revealed that “instructions were given by the highest authority in Morocco to provide financial and logistical assistance to the Mozabite Autonomist Movement and to promote its autonomist thesis in international human rights forums.”

Annahar Television, which is believed to act as an arm of the Algerian military intelligence apparatus, also claimed that “Ahmed Assid, an Amazigh activist and a leading member of the Royal Institute of the Amazigh Culture (IRCAM), intervened to arrange a meeting between the named Kamal Eddine Fakhar [the leader of the Mozabite Autonomy Movement] and King Mohammed VI’s advisor on Cultural Affairs.”

According to the same source, “the so-called Ahmed Assid, who calls for normalizing relations with the Zionist entity, helped Kamal Fakhar to integrate the Mozabite Autonomy Movement in the so-called International Coalition of Democratic Forces, which is based in Sulaymaniyah, Iraq and headed by a well-known Zionist lobby.”