Algeria Succeeds In ‘Zeroing Out’ Problems With Its Neighbors And Isolating Morocco
From the Mauritanian capital, Nouakchott, to the Malian capital, Bamako, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the National Community Abroad, Ahmed Ataf, arrived on Tuesday evening, 25th April, for a working visit as special envoy of President Abdelmadjid Tebboune. This is his first trip since taking up the post in the middle of last month.
On his arrival in Bamako, Minister Ataf was received by his Malian counterpart, Abdo Lai Diop, in the presence of the Minister of Defence and war veterans, as well as the Minister of National Reconciliation, who is responsible for the peace and reconciliation agreement in Mali, which originated in Algeria, according to a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Algeria and Mali have a special and complex relationship. The peace agreement that frames the relationship between the central government and the northern rebel groups was signed in Algeria in 2015 under the auspices of the United Nations. Thanks to this agreement, the fighting in the north, adjacent to the country’s southern borders, has stopped, and the country still insists on maintaining it. Because of its benefits, not only for the state of Mali, but for the entire Sahel region’s need for security and stability.
The Foreign Minister’s visit to both Mauritania and Mali was not like its predecessors, visits for the sake of courtesy, the exchange of kisses and the strengthening of bilateral relations, as was the case in the traditional statements. On the contrary, it contains many tangible things that make these two neighboring and poor countries expect a lot from their big neighbor. …
The Algerian and Malian parties have reviewed bilateral cooperation in the fields of telecommunications, optical fibers, fuels, higher education and training, and have increased the number of flights to Bamako with a view to making it a regional hub on the continent, according to a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
This trend has been developed by the state in terms of its foreign policy since the creation of the Algerian Agency for International Cooperation for Solidarity and Development, a public institution attached to the Presidency of the Republic and created on 12 February 2020. Last year, President Tebboune allocated one billion dollars to support development on the African continent.
What Minister Ataf promised the Mauritanians, he also told the financial authorities, with a few details relating to the internal situation of its southern neighbor, a strategy that Algeria had also adopted with its eastern neighbor, Tunisia, in order to overcome its suffocating economic crisis, by granting loans and subsidies and deferring the payment of energy dues in solidarity with its Tunisian brothers.
This strategy, based on the sacrosanct notions of good neighborliness, generosity and non-violence, has enabled Algeria to resolve its problems with its neighbors (the Sahrawi Republic, Mauritania, Tunisia, Mali and Libya) and bring them closer to it in its chronic dispute with the Moroccan regime, which has today become an isolated island in a turbulent environment. Relations between Rabat and Tunisia have been severed, while those between Rabat and Nouakchott are in an unprecedented state of stagnation.
The choice of countries visited by the Foreign Minister also indicates that the new Minister’s approach, which does not deviate from the framework of the policy drawn up in the Mouradia Palace, is aimed at beefing up relations with neighboring countries in order to reinforce security and stability in the Maghreb and the Sahel region, where Algeria’s vast borders extend, and which is still targeted by forces that are eager to undermine its stability for geopolitical reasons and the greed for its spoils that makes some world leaders salivate.