Washington, DC (November 22, 2013) – Morocco’s King Mohammed VI and US President Barack Obama met today to discuss a broad range of critical issues and common interests in the Middle East and Africa. According to the joint statement issued afterwards, “Today’s meeting demonstrates that the interests of the United States and Morocco continue to converge, and that this historic partnership, which began in the 18th century, continues to thrive well into the 21th century.”
The two leaders “reaffirmed the strong and mutually beneficial partnership and strategic alliance between the United States and the Kingdom of Morocco,” emphasizing “shared values, mutual trust, common interests, and strong friendship.”
President Obama commended the King’s strong leadership in deepening democracy, economic growth and human development in Morocco, and on Morocco’s asylum and immigration reform initiative. The two leaders also reaffirmed the long-held US position that “Morocco’s autonomy plan [for Western Sahara] is serious, realistic, and credible, and that it represents a potential approach that could satisfy the aspirations of the people in the Western Sahara to run their own affairs in peace and dignity.”
Both leaders stressed Morocco’s importance as a platform for investment in Africa and pledged to continue their efforts to promote economic growth, human development and stability in the region. And they pledged to enhance counter-terrorism and non-proliferation cooperation, as well as efforts to “bolster democratic criminal justice institutions and to counter the threat of violent extremism in the region.”
“Morocco and the US have worked together successfully for centuries to advance peace, progress and stability,” said former US Ambassador to Morocco, Edward M. Gabriel. “Strengthening that relationship, as King Mohammed VI and President Obama did today, is even more essential now, when Africa and the Middle East are threatened by extremism and terrorism.”
* For the full text of the Joint Statement, see: http://m.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/11/22/joint-statement-united-states-america-and-kingdom-morocco.
* For more details on key areas of US-Moroccan partnership and cooperation, see: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/11/22/fact-sheet-us-morocco-strong-and-enduring-commitment
* For the history of US-Morocco relations, see “The US and Morocco Share a Long History of Friendship,” at: http://moroccoonthemove.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/FS_US-MoroccanAlliance18January2013.pdf
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