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Morocco, Israel agree to expand military cooperation

Morocco, Israel agree to expand military cooperation
Nasser Bourita, Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs, during a virtual meeting with his   -  
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Mosa'ab Elshamy/Copyright 2021 The AP. All rights reserved.


Morocco and Israel agreed to strengthen their military cooperation by expanding it to intelligence and cybersecurity, during a bilateral defense meeting Tuesday in Rabat, according to the Moroccan army.

The two countries "agreed to further strengthen this cooperation and expand it to other areas, including intelligence, air defense and electronic warfare," said the staff of the Royal Armed Forces (FAR) . in a press release.

This announcement follows the first meeting of the monitoring committee for Moroccan-Israeli defense cooperation which took place on Monday and Tuesday in the Moroccan capital, as part of the military rapprochement between the two countries.

The meeting was co-chaired by FAR Inspector General Belkhir El Farouk and Director of the Politico-Military Affairs Office of the Israeli Defense Ministry Dror Shalom.

The two parties also examined various aspects of their cooperation, including "logistics, training and training as well as the acquisition and modernization of equipment", details the press release.

Cooperation "carrying mutual interests and based on trust and mutual support", welcomed Belkhir El Farouk, number two in the Moroccan army.

In November 2021, former Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz signed a memorandum of understanding in Rabat governing security relations with Morocco.

His historic visit was followed in July by that of former army boss Aviv Kochavi, the first by an Israeli chief of staff to the Cherifian kingdom.

The rapprochement between Morocco and Israel has accelerated since the diplomatic normalization carried out in December 2020 within the framework of the Abraham Accords, a process between the Jewish state and several Arab countries, supported by Washington.

This rapprochement is viewed with suspicion by neighbouring Algeria, a staunch supporter of the Palestinians, exacerbating the already high tensions between the two countries due to deep disagreements over Western Sahara.

A conflict in Western Sahara opposes Morocco, which controls 80% of the territory, to the separatists of the Polisario Front supported by Algeria.

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