France and Morocco have agreed to work together to combat terrorism, drug trafficking and illegal immigration.
French Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy agreed the deal with his Moroccan counterpart, Chakib Benmoussa.
Mr Sarkozy was in Morocco as part of an African tour, widely seen as a prelude to his presidential bid next year.
He has already visited Benin and Mali, where there were street protests over his tough immigration policy, designed to keep out “unskilled” foreigners.
French MPs have already backed Mr Sarkozy’s immigration bill but it can only become law after it has been passed by the Senate.
Wow! This is marvellous. I am very confident in them working together. They are just going to send more inmigrants to Spain, that’s all. From Spain Herald:
Saharan human rights activist Aminetu Haidar said yesterday in Seville that prime minister Zapatero’s support for his own Alliance of Civilizations project is “incompatible with permitting the tortures that the Moroccan government inflicts on the Saharan people.” After speaking before the Andalusian regional parliament, Haidar said that if the Spanish government does not act in favor of self-determination for the Western Sahara, “it will be responsible for the genocide and massacres that are going to begin, if they have not already…Spain and France are the two governments that support Morocco’s state terrorism against the Saharan people.”
She called Zapatero’s proposed Alliance of Civilizations “a makeup job that the administration applies to its face while it turns its back on the Saharan people, who have not received any support from this government, despite the strong support that the Spanish people have given us.” Haidar added, “Morocco does not respect the Saharans.”
Aminetu Haidar also called on Spain to accept “its historical and legal responsibility with respect to the Sahara, and recognize the crimes committed against the Saharan people.” Therefore, she said, “Spain should take a clear position on self-determination.”
I think that we are more indebted with this people that with American indigene population. While our American domination was ended because of an independence war, Saharan people were left alone after Franco’s death and Morocco, with international support or at least not much critisizing of their position, invaded their territory.
But the aggressions to Saharan people continue: you can see photos here. The problem is that most of the documents are in Spanish. Anyway,there has been arbitrary detentions made to Saharan activists since the Moroccan invasion. The problem is that with the new antiterrorist measures, they are detained as Islamists or terrorists, being none of that (someone has heard of a Saharan terrorist? ehh, … NOPE).
Socialists at first were very much interested in defending Saharan cause as they thought that it was so good to oppose right-wingers. But everything changed with Mr. Zapatero new political approach. As Perejil conflict showed, Mr. Aznar’s relationship with Morocco was not the best. And so Mr Zapatero had to change this policy as well, not taking into account that most of the accused in March 11th bombings were Moroccans. He has not said anything about Saharan situation before Moroccan king, Mohammed VI, -in fact, he has not said it at any time- and several Socialists have praised them openly. Even when international opinion was critical with Spanish handling of inmigrants in Ceuta and Melilla last year and it was proved that Moroccan police killed two inmigrants and the rest were obliged to walk thrpugh Moroccan desert, where 24 -at least- were dead of thurst.
Moroccan authorities have been denying pass to foreign delegations that intended to defend Saharan Human Rights. For example, from Norway, Spain. Spanish journalists have also been expelled (example).
By the wat, there are also connections with the Oil-for-Food scandal, coming from Morocco.
That is why when I read this kind of news, I just burst out laughing… just for not crying. I know Islamism is a threat -that is why I keep TAJP- but at the same time, I do think these decissions are nothing more than an international pose just to appease foreign critics and as such to diminish the importance of democracy and opposition movements inside it.
UPDATE: I am even more concerned now that I have read this: France and Morocco will help Spain with inmigration problem. According to Sarkozy and Benmoussa joint communiqué, “taking into account the situation of the arrival of inmigrants to the Canary Islands coasts, the ministers have decided to take the necessary measures without waiting, (…) mainly the related with technical and financial support to benefit the countries that need it“.