Syndicated News from Morocco
Sat, 18 May 2013 17:02:12 GMT
Sat, 18 May 2013 13:41:56 GMT
Fri, 17 May 2013 05:53:46 GMT
Thu, 16 May 2013 18:16:04 GMT
Sat, 18 May 2013 18:15:25 GMT
Tue, 14 May 2013 16:08:56 GMT
New York Times (blog)
Travel Essentials | Taroudant, MoroccoNew York Times (blog)In our Summer Travel issue, which hit newsstands on Sunday, Christopher Petkanas waxes poetic about Taroudant, an out-of-the-way, stylish haven from Morocco's well-trodden tourist route. Here's where to stay, eat and sleep in this remote market town.
Fri, 17 May 2013 17:15:32 GMT
Hall senior earns full scholarship to study Arabic in MoroccoWest Hartford NewsWEST HARTFORD ? Soon after Hall senior Eliza Allison celebrates high school graduation, she'll head off to Morocco to study Arabic for a year on one of 625 National Security Language Initiative for Youth scholarships offered for 2013-2014. As a ...
Sat, 18 May 2013 12:53:31 GMT
Fri, 17 May 2013 13:08:59 GMT
Thu, 16 May 2013 15:38:50 GMT
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Results 1 - 10 of Headlines for Morocco
Wednesday, January 15th, 2003
: RCN Administrator
On Jan. 14, at the end of a two-day trade visit to Morocco, French Foreign Trade Minister Francois Loos chastised Rabat for seeking a free-trade deal with the United States, saying, "You cannot say you want a closer partnership with the EU and at the same time sign a free-trade agreement with the U.S. … You have to decide which one you choose." Morocco is due to begin FTA negotiations with the United States on Jan. 21.
For the most part, this statement is simple hypocrisy. The EU is a master of using trade access to extend its commercial and political reach. Trade links between the EU and the former colonies of its member states -- as enshrined in the 1975 Lomé Accords -- successfully held 69 African, Caribbean and Pacific states in Europe’s orbit for a generation.
The EU regularly attempts to cement trade deals with states that Washington considers within its sphere of influence. Brussels penned a free-trade agreement with Mexico -- one of America’s NAFTA partners -- in July 2000. The union also tried aggressively to complete a trade deal with Mercosur -- the Latin American customs union that includes Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay -- until the Argentine collapse in December 2001.
Europe is not the only power to use trade for political purposes. In 2002, Washington finished hammering out a similar agreement with Jordan, consistently the most pro-U.S. state. Another U.S. plan would band the entire Western Hemisphere (sans Cuba) together in a massive trade bloc called the Free Trade Area of the Americas. France’s concern is that its influence in Morocco, a former colony that already is a staunch U.S. ally, is about to decline precipitously due to the intrusion of U.S. economic might.
But while Loos’ statement clearly is hypocritical, it is one that Rabat must consider. The EU commands two-thirds of Morocco’s total foreign trade. France alone consumes about 40 percent of Morocco’s exports and supplies 30 percent of its imports, versus 9 percent and 6 percent, respectively, for the United States. Altering such deep trade flows is not easy, and Morocco probably will have just as many problems getting its agricultural produce into U.S. markets as into European markets.
Europe -- especially France -- could make life difficult for Morocco during the next few years, but it is unlikely that Brussels or Paris will choose a confrontational path. Morocco is only one piece in a developing European plan, and a rather small and peripheral one at that. The EU now is attempting to band all of the states of the Mediterranean into a common EU-dominated trade area called the Mediterranean Basin Initiative.
Should Europe single out Morocco for punishment over its fliration with Washington, other -- more important -- states in the Mediterranean Basin might find the EU’s offer a little less attractive. Morocco will be allowed to go its own way, but Rabat is about to lose quite a bit of political clout -- particularly in Paris.Results Page:
Sunday, July 21st, 2002
: RCN Administrator
Morocco has renewed commitment to negotiate "a fair and lasting political settlement" to the Sahara issue on the basis of the UN draft framework agreement.
In a letter sent to the chairman of the UN Security Council, Morocco’s permanent delegate to the world body, Mohamed Bennouna, says Morocco is still committed for a political fair and lasting solution to this regional dispute, created artificially to counteract Morocco’s legitimate territorial integrity rights.
The Moroccan delegate said Morocco had accepted to negotiate the draft framework agreement, mooted by the UN secretary general personal envoy, James Baker, underscoring the framework agreement builds on the need to reach "a political compromise" by delegating large prerogatives to the concerned population under Morocco’s sovereignty over its southern provinces.
The letter, sent as the Security Council is projecting to examine the extension of the term of MINURSO (French acronym for the UN mission supervising the holding of a referendum in the Sahara), recalls that unlike Morocco, which accepted to negotiate on the basis of the draft framework agreement, submitted in June 2001, Algeria and the Polisario disregarded the UN security council resolution 1359 and refused the principle of negotiations. They even put forward the idea of partitioning the territory that bears dangers for the stability of the whole Maghreb region, in an evident attempt to hinder the political solution process.
The letter sees that the Security Council will have to decide between granting Baker a clear mandate to carry on his political mediation, started with the draft framework agreement, or the statu-quo with all the risks it entails.
Morocco hopes that the Council will encourage the continuation of the political solution initiatives, started by Baker in June 2001, to settled the regional conflict on the Sahara and open the way for the Maghreban regional construction, the letter says.
Thursday, July 18th, 2002
: RCN Administrator
CEUTA, Spain — Morocco won’t try to reoccupy a disputed Mediterranean island if Spain withdraws its troops, Morocco’s foreign minister was quoted Friday as saying, apparently easing a standoff that had sent relations between the nations to their lowest point in decades.
There was no immediate response from Spain’s government, but a day earlier it had pledged to withdraw from the tiny rock outcrop called Isla Perejil, or Parsley Island, in Spanish and Leila in Arabic, if Morocco agreed to stay off, too.
"I say publicly: Morocco has no intention of returning to Leila when the Spanish troops leave," Moroccan Foreign Minister Mohamed Benaissa said in an interview Thursday night. His comments were reported in La Vanguardia and other newspapers on Friday.
The island was virtually uninhabited for years until Morocco posted a small detachment of troops there last week, ostensibly for the purpose of monitoring drug trafficking and illegal immigration.
Spanish troops escorted them off peacefully on Wednesday, but the diplomatic impasse remains.
"No one is more interested than Spain in maintaining the best relations with the Kingdom of Morocco," Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar said Thursday.
Both countries claim sovereignty over the rock mass that lies just 200 yards off Morocco’s northern coast and some 12 miles from mainland Spain.
Spain wants to return to the arrangement where neither country flies its flag on the island.
Perejil has been a Spanish possession for nearly 400 years. Spain also holds several other islands and city enclaves next to Morocco.
Benaissa denounced the takeover as a "declaration of war," but until his subsequent comments Thursday night, his government was conspicuously silent.
Spain, one of Morocco’s main trading partners and aid donors, said it would not escalate the conflict nor cut economic ties with Morocco.
"There will be absolutely no trade reprisals," said Economy Minister Rodrigo Rato.
Spanish warships continued circled the island, keeping away boats of sightseers and journalists.
On the rock, two Spanish flags flew and some 30 soldiers kept guard.
The standoff -- with its subtext of clashing notions of justice and equality, Europe against Africa, rich versus poor -- has captured worldwide interest.
The European Union restated its support for Madrid, but ruled out sanctions against Morocco, while The Arab League said it considers the island to be part of Morocco.
Morocco is seen by the West as a valuable friend in the Arab world and one which has supported the United States and its European allies in several international conflicts, most notably the Gulf War against Iraq.
But Spain has rarely had smooth relations with its Arab neighbor across the Strait of Gibraltar.
The countries bicker over illegal immigration and fishing rights, as well as Madrid’s support for a U.N.-sponsored referendum on the Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony annexed by Morocco in the 1970s.
Ties between the two countries worsened since Aznar took office in 1996. Morocco recalled its ambassador last October without explanation.