Mamadou Tangara, Gambian Minister of Foreign Affairs, reiterated that the Moroccan ownership of Western Sahara is "clear and unambiguous"

Gambia maintains its support for Morocco's autonomy plan for Western Sahara

PHOTO/REDES - Mamadou Tangara, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Gambia, y Nasser Bourita, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Marruecos
photo_camera PHOTO/REDES - Mamadou Tangara, Gambian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Nasser Bourita, Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs

With these declarations by the Gambian minister, the West African country joins the long list of nations that support Morocco's position on the sovereignty of Western Sahara. On the sidelines of the meeting with the Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nasser Bourita, Mamadou Tangara recalled that Gambia has always been on the side of the Moroccan kingdom. 

Gambia was one of the first countries to open consulates in Dakhla, a fact to be taken into account with regard to support for Morocco on the Sahara issue. During the press conference, the diplomat paid tribute to Morocco for having significantly reinforced the solidarity of the Moroccan people during the Al-Haouz earthquake.  The defence of Morocco's territorial security has always been among the concerns of the Gambian administration, which considers the Alawi kingdom to be one of the main economic engines of North Africa.

PHOTO/REDES - Mamadou Tangara, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Gambia, y Nasser Bourita, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Marruecos
PHOTO/REDES - Mamadou Tangara, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Gambia, and Nasser Bourita, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Morocco

Already in May, Gambia's permanent representative to the UN, Lang Yabo, praised the North African nation for supporting the ceasefire in Western Sahara and urged other states to ensure that human rights and fundamental freedoms are respected and upheld. 

It commended the efforts of the North African nation, led by King Mohammed VI, to assist and rebuild the affected population. Also, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the diplomat highlighted the Kingdom's efforts to ensure universal vaccination of the Sahrawi population. "All these measures clearly demonstrate Morocco's long-term commitment to achieving socio-economic development in the sub-Saharan region," he said. 

PHOTO/REDES - Mamadou Tangara, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Gambia, y Nasser Bourita, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Marruecos
PHOTO/REDES - Mamadou Tangara, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Gambia, and Nasser Bourita, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Morocco

Historically, relations between the two countries have been in good health, and since the announcement of the gas pipeline project linking Nigeria and Morocco, they have intensified. The project will boost the economies of up to 13 countries: Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Senegal, Mauritania and Morocco. 

Last October, Nasser Bourita announced that the number of EU member states backing Morocco's autonomy plan for Western Sahara had risen to 14 after the Czech Republic expressed its support for the plan. Efforts to preserve Morocco's territorial integrity received strong support from Spain in 2022, when the European nation announced its support for the 2007 Autonomy Plan to resolve the Western Sahara conflict. 

PHOTO/ARCHIVO - Mamadou Tangara, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Gambia, y Nasser Bourita, ministro de Asuntos Exteriores de Marruecos, inauguran el consulado gambiano en Dajla
PHOTO/ARCHIVO - Mamadou Tangara, Gambian Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Nasser Bourita, Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs, inaugurate the Gambian consulate in Dakhla

Spain called Rabat's initiative 'the most serious and credible solution' to the conflict. Prior to Spain's decision, the US determination in late 2020 to recognise Morocco's sovereignty over Western Sahara also marked a setback in the history of the conflict and reinforced sovereignty over the southern region. Regionally, around 40% of African countries have opened consulates in Laayoune or Dakhla, indicating growing support for Morocco's territorial integrity. Currently, more than 27 countries have opened diplomatic missions in the southern province and Dakhla now has 15 consulates. 

More in Politics