Sánchez goes to Rabat, Mohamed VI calls him from Gabon

pedro sanchez preocupado

Mohamed VI’s approach to Pedro Sánchez tarnishes the High Level Meeting (HLM) between Morocco and Spain, which La Moncloa expected to be “historic”. The Alaouite monarch did not receive the President of the Government yesterday on his arrival in Rabat for a bilateral summit that had not been held in this way for eight years, and limited himself to dealing with diplomatic formalities via a phone call from Gabon.

Over the past year, the Spanish government has made significant efforts to improve relations with its African neighbour, starting with the U-turn in its international position on Western Sahara, which has led it to defend the former colony as an autonomous region within Moroccan territory. Just a fortnight ago, the PSOE also voted against a European Parliament resolution demanding respect for freedom of expression and press freedom in a country where several journalists are imprisoned, precisely with the intention of not undermining this rapprochement with a partner it considers ‘strategic’.

In the absence of the concreteness of the at least 24 agreements to be signed today within the framework of the RAN, for now the only tangible gesture made by Morocco – which still does not recognise Spanish sovereignty over Ceuta and Melilla – has been to agree to set up a pilot project to open commercial customs offices in these autonomous cities.

In the PP, for their part, it was pointed out that ‘there is no greater humiliation than giving in to Morocco, going with half the government to give satisfaction, showing your true colours in the European Parliament, the king not receiving you and being satisfied with him picking up the phone’. “Is Sánchez free in the face of Morocco, so much that he lets himself be ignored?” wrote the deputy secretary for Institutional Action, Esteban González Pons, on his Twitter account.

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