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Omar Hilale Gets Into Heated Exchange with Algerian Counterpart

Rabat – The Non-Aligned Movement’s closing session of the ministerial meeting held in Baku saw a series of heated exchanges between Morocco’s Permanent Representative to the UN Omar Hilale and his Algerian counterpart Amar Bendjama.

The exchanges began when Bendjama expressed “astonishment” at the speech delivered by the Moroccan delegation the day before, claiming that it attacked Algeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmed Attaf, who was also present at the meeting.

In response, Hilale said that he never mentioned Algeria in the speech, but also implied that the Algerian ambassador was successful in picking up insinuations in Morocco’s speech.

“If the cap fits, wear it,” Hilale said, according to Morocco’s Press Agency (MAP).

He went on to criticize Algeria for seemingly giving itself the right to invoke international law or levy accusations against Morocco, but then taking offense when the Rabat representatives did the same.

He also rejected the way in which Algeria invokes Security Council resolutions while voicing irritation when the Moroccan delegation points out its neighbor’s refusal to commit to said resolutions.

The ambassador concluded by reaffirming Morocco’s position on the Western Sahara dispute, which sees the region as unequivocally Moroccan, asserting to the Algerian ambassador that Morocco would always respond immediately and energetically to any questioning of its sovereignty over the region.

Morocco and Algeria’s ties have witnessed increased strain in recent years, as the latter unilaterally cut ties with its neighbor to the west in 2021.

Accusing Rabat of being behind the wildfires that devastated the country that summer, Algeria cut its diplomatic ties with Morocco, who have continued to deny the accusations.

Since then, there have been several accusations raised against Morocco from Algeria’s government and officials, including allegations that it is “flooding Algeria with drugs” or sabotaging the country’s democracy.

Source : Morocco World News