Morocco Says It Hasn’t Applied To Join BRICS


Morocco has not made a formal request to join the BRICS grouping and will not attend its summit in South Africa, state news agency MAP said.

Citing an unnamed diplomatic source, MAP denied a statement by South Africa’s Foreign Minister Anil Sooklal who said earlier this month Morocco was among the nations seeking to join the bloc.

“South Africa allowed itself to speak about Morocco’s ties with the BRICS without prior consultation,” it said.

The group of major emerging economies is now made of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, but its potential expansion will be discussed at the summit and South Africa has said more than 40 countries have expressed interest in joining.

South Africa’s diplomatic support for the Algeria-backed Polisario front, which seeks to establish an independent state in Western Sahara, a territory Morocco considers as its own, has strained relations between the two countries.

Morocco would not attend the BRICS meeting in South Africa, MAP said.

The agency added: “South Africa has in fact always shown a primary hostility toward Morocco and has systematically taken negative and dogmatic positions on the Moroccan Sahara issue.”

Morocco is attached to a non-divisive multilateralism and has good ties with the rest of BRICS member states, it said.

Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet African heads of state on the sidelines of the BRICS summit “to advance China-Africa cooperation in the new era,” China’s ambassador to South Africa said.

The meeting will take place late on Thursday, the last day of the three-day summit, Chen Xiaodong said.

The day has been set aside for events involving the more than 70 countries invited as “friends” of the BRICS bloc.

On Tuesday, Xi will pay a state visit to South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa in Pretoria and later travel to Johannesburg for the summit, in what will be his fifth trip to South Africa since he became president in 2013.

Arab News

Arab News is Saudi Arabia's first English-language newspaper. It was founded in 1975 by Hisham and Mohammed Ali Hafiz. Today, it is one of 29 publications produced by Saudi Research & Publishing Company (SRPC), a subsidiary of Saudi Research & Marketing Group (SRMG).

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