Digital Bureau, Amar Ujala, Rabat
Updated Sun, 13 Dec 2020 07:59 PM IST
US President Donald Trump
– Photo: PTI (File)
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It is because of the Trump administration initiative that the United Arab Emirates (UAE), then Bahrain and Sudan and now Morocco have decided to forge full diplomatic relations with Israel. The UAE made this decision on 14 August. In the four months that followed, there have been rapid changes in diplomacy in West Asia. The most important role behind this is played by Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and mentor. The news of the interaction between Saudi Arabia and Israel was also discussed in the global media due to Kushner’s efforts. However, Saudi Arabia later denied it.
Morocco announced a full diplomatic relationship with Israel on 10 December. In this way it has become the fourth country to do so in this region of West Asia and North Africa. To make this decision from Morocco, the Trump administration gave him a special but controversial gift. He recognized Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara. Till now, the international community has considered the occupation of Morocco illegal. Western Sahara was previously a colony of Spain. When Spain returned from it 40 years ago, Morocco captured it. But until now no country in the world had recognized the annexation of Morocco. Native populations of Western Sahara have been fighting for independence from Morocco for decades.
According to reports in the international media, the United Nations was shocked by the announcement of a change in American policy regarding Western Sahara. A UN spokesperson said that officials of this global body got information about this through a tweet. But the United Nations still believes that the situation in Western Sahara should be decided according to the UN resolutions.
The Trump administration has made surprise changes to US policy to help Israel. Just as he gave the disputed gift of Western Sahara to Morocco, he removed Sudan’s name from the list of countries sponsoring terrorism. These steps of the Trump administration have been criticized by many Democratic Party leaders in the US. He has reiterated that Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara was illegal and is still illegal.
It is said that the freedom struggle of the Western Sahara people is supported by Algeria. Algeria supports the Polisario Front there, which aims to establish an independent country. The Polisario Front has strongly condemned the Trump administration’s latest move. Spain has also rejected the Trump administration’s announcement of Western Sahara as a Moroccan territory. Morocco occupies about 80 percent of the controversial land of Western Sahara. This area is full of phosphate minerals. Along with this, there is a fish-rich water area on its coast.
Meanwhile, there is a discussion that the Trump administration is also busy in maintaining diplomatic relations of Israel with Pakistan and Egypt. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has agreed to negotiate with Israel. But they have said that they will begin this process after 20 January 2021, when Joe Biden takes over power in America. But it may not be possible for Pakistan to do so, because its country will be deeply opposed. It is being speculated that in the coming days, Qatar can definitely take steps towards establishing a relationship with Israel.