Algeria breaks diplomatic relations with Morocco, citing “hostile”

Algeria is cutting diplomatic relations with Morocco, Foreign Minister Ramdane Lamamra said at a press conference on Tuesday, accusing his neighbor of “hostile actions”.

Morocco and Algeria have enjoyed strained relations for decades, mainly over the question of Western Sahara, and the border between the two countries has been closed since 1994.

“The Moroccan kingdom has never ceased its hostile actions against Algeria,” he said.

Morocco’s foreign ministry could not be reached immediately for comment. King Mohammed VI called for improved relations with Algeria.

The cut of diplomatic relations is effective from Tuesday but the consulates of each country will remain open, said Mr. Lamamra.

Algeria said last week that the deadly forest fires were the work of groups it called terrorists, one of which was backed by Morocco.

Lamamra cited what he called Moroccan support for one of these groups, which is seeking autonomy in Algeria’s Kabylia region, and said Rabat spied on Algerian officials and failed to comply. its bilateral obligations, particularly with regard to Western Sahara.

Algeria supports the Polisario movement which claims the independence of Western Sahara, which Morocco considers to be part of its own territory.



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