On November 28 French President François Hollande had a long telling phone conversation with King Mohammed. The two leaders tackled issues of mutual interest focusing on on bilateral relations and regional and international issues, including the current situation in Mali and Syria.
President Hollande welcomed the organization of the Eleventh Senior joint Moroccan-French Meeting to be held in Rabat on December 12 and 13. According to the French President ” This seminar illustrates the uniqueness of our relationships and the density of bilateral political dialogue.”
President Holland seized this opportunity to thank King Mohammed for his invitation to visit Morocco and reiterated that he will be happy to make a visit at the beginning of 2013.
The two leaders discussed regional and international issues of common interest. Their views converged on the crisis in the Sahel and the necessity to find urgently solutions to the fight terrorism by supporting African initiatives to preserve the territorial integrity of Mali.
Regarding the situation in Syria, the Elysee said that the two leaders “expressed their hope that the international community mobilizes to stop violence and hope that a peaceful political transition that will respect the will and expectations of the Syrians, soon be implemented. Both leaders underlined the the importance of the upcoming meeting of Friends of the Syria to be held in Marrakech on December 12. This was also a suitable opportunity to discuss the ongoing situation in the Middle East and both leaders reiterated their commitment to promote the resumption of negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians to make progress towards a two state solution, the only way to ensure a lasting, just and comprehensive peace in the region.
On each of these issues, they agreed to stay in close contact and reinforce their already successful cooperation in the Security Council.
François Hollande also “underlined the priority France gives to the resumption of cooperation in the Mediterranean and recalled the constant support of France for a united Maghreb, stable and prosperous, that will benefit all Mediterranean partners “..
Apparently, President Hollande had placed his call to King Mohammed to congratulate him on the continuous commitment Morocco has made to provide humanitarian aid to suffering populations whether in Africa or in the Middle East. It was also an opportunity to recongratulate His Majesty for his clear vision that led Morocco to peaceful transition toward democratization and to suggest that the Moroccan process should serve as a model for other North African states as they attempt to evolve into freely elected democracies.
He also stressed the potential for economic development between France and Morocco and the opportunities now open for more cooperation. Both Morocco and France are already trade partners in many commodities, but they remain even more ambitious for more trade relations that will benefit not only Morocco but the whole region.
Other states in the Maghreb have much to learn from the Morocco experience, and can benefit by the example of King Mohammed’s political, economic, and religious reforms, which can provide new impetus to Maghreb countries and reinforce their relationships, while improving opportunities for economic development and political reform throughout North Africa.
While some observers have pointed out that Morocco has managed wisely and effectively the Arab Spring, now Morocco focusing on economic development, job creation, educational reforms, and better living conditions for the Moroccans. France as a very close ally and the first economic partner, is looking forward to reinforcing even more those historical relations with Morocco.