Saad Alami, Morocco’s ambassador to Egypt and a member of the Istiqlal Party, said that the eastern regions of Bechar and Tindouf belong to Morocco.
In an interview with local newspaper (Echorouk), Alami said that documents and international references attest to the sovereignty of Morocco over these territories, adding that before their annexation to Algeria by France, the territories were the scene of armed clashes between Sahrawi tribes, including Rguibates and Ait Oussa.
Alami also said that King Hassan II signed an agreement with the head of the Algerian provisional government in 1961 for a settlement of the issue of the route border by the end of colonization. “Both parties had agreed to the establishment of a joint commission to conduct the study and solution of this problem in a spirit of brotherhood and Maghreb unity,” as stated by an Agence France Press (AFP) news release issued at the time.
The Algerian ambassador to Egypt Nadir Al Aabaoui quickly responded to the comments made by the Moroccan diplomat, saying in an update made to the Egyptian newspaper that his country had recovered “its sovereignty over the entire territory thanks to the enormous sacrifices, blood and baroud (Gunpowder).”
The Algerian diplomat added that Morocco recognized the borders of his country inherited from France in a document that former foreign minister Abdellatif Filali had given to his Algerian counterpart Booalam Bessayah on May 4th, 1989.
The Moroccan Parliament does not recognize the border delineation between the two neighboring countries.
Saad Alami is not the first member of the Istiqlal Party to call for the reclaiming of the eastern regions of Tindouf and Bechar.
Hamid Chabat, the Secretary General of the Istiqlal Party once told a rally of his party sympathizers that the Moroccan lands occupied by Algeria must be reclaimed, adding that “restoring Moroccan lands must be every Moroccan’s concern.”
In an appearance on 2M TV, he said that “The Istiqlal Party since the Aix-Les-Bains negotiations until now, has been aware of the task to regain Moroccan borders, especially the southern provinces: the Moroccan Sahara, Tindouf region, Colomb-Beshar, Kenadsa, Ceuta and Melilla, and Perejil Island.