From Assistance to Partnership: Morocco and Its Foreign Policy in West Africa
ARMY WAR COLLEGE CARLISLE BARRACKS PA STRATEGIC STUDIES INSTITUTE
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Morocco is seeking to position itself as a regional security provider in West Africa. Over recent years, Morocco has emerged as a key partner for the development of variety of sectors in different West African countries, but it also aspires to contribute to peace and stability of this African sub-region that continues to face important challenges and significant threats. In particular, a range of initiatives is under way to combat religious extremism, terrorism, and transnational organized crime including illicit drug trafficking, which remains a major threat to peace and security in the region. At a time of deepening budget constraints, bilateral cooperation with reliable and moderate regional partners offers a potential means of reducing costs while still maintaining regional reach in order to pursue U.S. security objectives. Morocco s new efforts and initiative offer synergies with U.S. priorities for the region. Morocco, with its geographic location, political stability, and close cultural ties with Sub-Saharan Africa, offers itself as a potential partner to the U.S. defense community to maintain U.S. influence in the region and address shared security concerns. In this monograph, Dr. Mohammed El-Katiri focuses on the geopolitical, security, and economic drivers of the renewed Moroccan interest in Sub-Saharan Africa. He highlights Morocco s contribution to counterextremism in West Africa and the Sahel region through initiatives promoting moderate Islam, and concludes with a number of recommendations on how Morocco could be supported by the United States in tackling some key common challenges arising from these sub-regions of Africa.
- Government and Political Science