Morocco has rejected humanitarian aid offered by neighbouring Algeria to help Rabat deal with the aftermath of the massive earthquake that hit the country on Friday night, the Moroccan foreign ministry has revealed. At least 2,122 people are known to have been killed in the earthquake, with more than 2,400 others injured.
The rejection came a day after Moroccan Justice Minister Abdellatif Ouahabi told Al-Arabiya that his country was accepting Algerian aid provided that it is delivered in coordination with the Moroccan foreign ministry.
After Ouahabi’s statement, the Algerian authorities announced that they would mobilise three military aircraft to carry humanitarian aid and support personnel to help Morocco confront the repercussions of the deadly earthquake. However, yesterday, a foreign ministry official informed the Algerian Consul in Casablanca that Morocco no longer requires humanitarian aid from his country.
“Algeria is offering an emergency assistance plan if accepted by the Kingdom of Morocco,” said the foreign ministry in Algiers. “The assistance would include sending a civil protection intervention team consisting of 80 specialists to Morocco, as well as a technical team specialised in searching under the rubble and a medical team.”
Algeria and Morocco are regional rivals whose ties are strained over the disputed Western Sahara region. In August 2021, Algeria severed diplomatic relations with Morocco, accusing Rabat of having “hostile tendencies,” an accusation denied vehemently by the Kingdom.
Source : MEMO