Former Algerian Major General Says Morocco is Algeria’s Enemy

Abdelaziz Medjahed
Retired Algerian Major-General Abdelaziz Medjahed

Retired Algerian Major-General Abdelaziz Medjahed used a recent interview with Radio Algerienne to criticize the Moroccan government.

Invited to comment on the situation in Algeria after the resignation of Abdelaziz Bouteflika Medjahed said that the “threats are many and varied, because we live in an unstable and a dangerous world.”

As an example, the former senior military officer referred to Morocco as an enemy of Algeria.

He then accused Morocco of “violating the resolutions of the United Nations and going outside of their limits to attack a Sahrawi territory.”

According to Medjahed, Algeria has to choose friends, allies, and partners to isolate its enemies after the crisis.

Without commenting on Algeria’s actions in the conflict, Medjahed said that “there are those who want to harm the Algerian state from when we gained independence to the present.”

He continued, “They think we are divided, but it must be proved that Algerians are united together to deter all external threats.”

It is not the first time Medjahed, or other former Algerian officials, has criticized the Moroccan state.

In 2018, the general accused Morocco of drug trafficking and providing Algeria with “all the negative consequences of the consumption” of drugs for young Algerian people.

The former official downplayed Algeria’s role in the Western Sahara conflict for years. The Moroccan government has emphasized the importance of Algeria’s involvement to finding a mutually acceptable and agreed upon political solution to the dispute.

The Algerian government is, however, taking part in roundtable discussions on the conflict.

Dialogue initiative

Despite Morocco’s firm position that Algeria should take responsibility in the conflict, Algeria believes that the solution should be found between Morocco and Polisario.

The Algerian government also ignored Morocco’s dialogue initiative in November 2018 from King Mohammed VI, who called on Algeria to engage in a frank and direct dialogue to break the stalemate hindering Maghreb unity.

Amid Algeria’s silence on the Moroccan initiative, Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita summoned the Algerian ambassador in Rabat last year to ask him for his country’s position on the King’s offer. The meeting did not result in any statement from Algeria.

The minister also issued a statement saying that the royal initiative “stems from a sincere desire to create a framework for direct and inclusive bilateral dialogue to resolve all disputes between the two countries.”