Morocco Risks Spat With Second European Power as Spain Hosts Foe

Morocco’s prime minister condemned Spain for hosting the leader of a movement fighting for the independence of the disputed Western Sahara, signaling a possible second feud between the kingdom and a major European partner.

The government plans an “appropriate response” to the presence of the Polisario Front’s chief in Spain, premier Saad Eddine El Othmani told lawmakers in Morocco’s capital, Rabat, on Monday. The North African nation is already mired in a dispute with Germany, which it accuses of having a “negative attitude” regarding Western Sahara.

A Polisario official was quoted by Algeria’s state news agency last week as saying its leader Brahim Ghali was being treated for the coronavirus in Spain, one of Morocco’s major trade and investment partners. Spokespeople for Spain’s government weren’t immediately able to comment.

Morocco recalled its ambassador from Germany last week for consultations, having suspended at least some diplomatic contacts in March.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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