Morocco Current Affairs

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Cuba and Morocco re-establish diplomatic ties after 37 years

Guided by the mutual will to develop friendly relations, Cuba and Morocco has signed an agreement to re-establish diplomatic ties after a time period of 37 years. The two governments have also agreed to forge political, economic and cultural cooperation. The agreement to this effect was signed at the headquarters of the Permanent Mission of Cuba to the United Nations.

King Mohamed VI of Morocco has ordered the opening of a Moroccan embassy in Havana. Cuba is one of the few Latin American countries in which Morocco does not have any representation. It is expected that the relations between the countries would be restored after the exchange of ambassadors.

After Cuba’s diplomatic reestablishment with Morocco, Israel, South Korea and Somalia remain the only countries which do not have any ties with Cuba.

The decision to re-establish diplomatic ties has been made couple of weeks after King Mohammed’s private visit to Cuba. The visit of King Mohammed VI is the first ever made by a Moroccan king to Cuba.

Background

Morocco severed its ties with Cuba in 1980 after Fidel Castro officially recognised Western Sahara as the independent Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR). Morocco claims the territory as its own.

The Cuba and Morocco relationship suffered several strains since 1960s due to Cuba’s decision to side with Algeria during the Morocco-Algerian military conflict of 1963 known as the “Sand War.” In 1970s, Cuba again decided to side with Algeria in its support for the independence of the Western Sahara from Morocco.

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Union Cabinet approves India’s approach to climate change negotiations at COP22 to UNFCCC

The Union Cabinet approved India’s approach to Climate Change Negotiations at the 22 Conference of Parties (COP) to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), held in Marrakesh, Morocco in November 2016.

The approval aims to safeguard interest of poor and vulnerable groups by laying stress on adaptation, damage and loss while protecting the development space.

What is India’s approach?

Growth and development of a country are linked with Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. The development space for India and developing countries needs to be preserved while combating the ill-effects of climate change. It seeks to address the adaptation needs of the country to combat the ill-effects of climate change and also enables the achievement of developmental goal. The approach incorporates the interest of all strata of society in the country.

Background

India in the 22 COP to UNFCCC had participated constructively to ensure that actions are based on the principles of equity and climate justice. India in along with other developing countries was able to ensure that climate actions are based on the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR) and climate justice.

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Abdelilah Bekirane elected as Prime minister of Morocco

Abdelilah Bekirane was re-appointed as the Prime Minister of Morocco for second term. Benkirane has been serving as Prime Minister since November 2011.

It was officially announced by Mohammed VI, the king of Morocco after Benkirane’s Islamic Justice and Development Party (PJD) emerged victorious in recent general election.

Now PM Bekirane will now reach out to other parties to form a coalition government as he does not have absolute majority in lower house.

Background

  • In recently concluded general election the PJD party had emerged single largest party by winning 125 seats.
  • While the opposition Authenticity and Modernity Party came second with 102 seats. Morocco’s oldest party Istiqlal (Independence) Party emerged third winning 46 seats.
  • Morocco has multi-party system which makes it impossible for any political party to win an absolute majority in the lower house of 395 members.
  • Of the total 395 members, 305 are elected in multi-seat constituencies from electoral lists, while of the remaining 90 seats, 60 seats are reserved for a national list of women. Reest 30 seats are set aside for the young candidates below the age of 35.

About Abdelilah Bekirane

  • Born in 1954 in Rabat, Morocco. He holds graduate degree in Physics. He is former Managing Editor of Al-Islah, Ar-Raya and Attajdid newspapers.
  • In 2016, he was elected for a fifth term in Parliament and represents Salé constituency since November 1997. Since 2008, he is secretary-general of the Justice and Development Party of Morocco.

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