Morocco and Spain flag background - Country wallpapers

Morocco and Spain flag background - Country wallpapers

Morocco and Spain

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Morocco and Spain relations

In recent times, Morocco–Spain relations have been friendly though intermittently discordant.


Spain holds sovereignty over two territorial exclaves on Africa's Mediterranean coast (Ceuta and Melilla) as well as some smaller islands (collectively referred to as the plazas de soberanía, that are also claimed by Morocco.

The relations deteriorated following the ascension to the Moroccan throne of Mohammed VI in 1999. Particularly the failure to reach a deal for fisheries between the European Union and Morocco in 2001 uneased the already complicated relations between José María Aznar and Mohammed VI.

In October 2001, Morocco recalled its ambassador from Madrid after pro-Saharan groups in Spain conducted a mock referendum on the fate of the region.

On 6 July 2002 Spanish military operations in the Alhucemas Islands were perceived to be a aggression by Morocco

On 11 July 2002 Perejil Island crisis erupted; members of the Royal Moroccan Navy occupied the uninhabited Perejil Island off the North-African coast; 6 days later Spain launched the "Operation Romeo-Sierra" and 28 members of the Special Operations Groups of the Spanish Army took control of the islet evicting the 6 Moroccan cadets then present in the islet, who offered no resistance. Diplomatic ties were not restored until January 2003. That July, Morocco complained that Spain lacked neutrality on the Sahara issue when it chaired the United Nations Security Council and, in October, Spain suspended arms sales to Morocco due to the Perejil crisis. Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero visited Morocco in April 2004, and King Juan Carlos I visited in January 2005; on both occasions, joint statements called for a negotiated settlement to the Sahara issue—the Moroccan position. However, visits to Ceuta and Melilla by the Spanish prime minister in January 2006 and monarchs in November 2007 again set back relations. The two neighbours also have an unresolved dispute concerning territorial waters between Morocco and the Spanish Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean. Morocco's "super port" near Tangier will pose competition that concerns Spanish ports. It is expected to achieve full capacity in 2014.

Territorial disputes, despite their drama, are subordinate to the continuing and productive economic cooperation between both countries, there is also shared interests in counterterrorism, counternarcotics, and efforts to stem illegal immigration. Morocco notably assisted Spanish authorities in the investigation of the 2004 bombings in Madrid and this relationship continues. Moroccan soldiers have served under Spanish command in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti and Moroccan gendarmes have joined Spanish patrols to combat illegal immigration in the Strait of Gibraltar.

On 31 July-1 August 2018 Morocco indefinitely closed the Beni Ansar Customs near Melilla.