The Spanish Prime Minister Adolfo Suarez arrived in Morocco on Monday (26 June) for talks with King Hassan on the tense situation in north-west Africa.
The Spanish Prime Minister Adolfo Suarez arrived in Morocco on Monday (26 June) for talks with King Hassan on the tense situation in north-west Africa. it was Mr. Suarez' first diplomatic mission to an African country. During his two-day visit, he is expected to discuss several other issues concerned with Spanish foreign policy as well as the fighting in the Western Sahara.
SYNOPSIS: Mr. Suarez was met the King Hassan in the Royal Place in Fez. The Morocco leader then greeted other members of the Spanish delegation, including Foreign Minister, Marceline Oreja. Mr. Suarez was expected to hold talks with the Morocco Prime Minister, Ahmed Osman after conferring with the King. During the welcoming ceremony, Mr. Suarez received the Grand Order of Ouissam - a high military decoration. The talks centred on the guerrilla war being waged by Algerian-backed Polisario rebels int he former Spanish colony of Western Sahara. Spain ceded the territory to Morocco and Mauritania two years ago and since then Polisario guerrillas have been fighting for independence.
After the preliminary round of talks, the Spanish Prime Minister spoke to newsmen outside the palace. Mr. Suarez said the discussions had been excellent, relating to economic and political matters of common interest. He said the main reason for his visit was to exchange views and information on all issues of mutual concern, as well as to discuss Spanish-Moroccan attitudes to the situation on in North Africa.
Spain is also anxious to discuss the Canary Island. A guerrilla force in the Spanish colony has been fighting for independence and the Liberation Committee of the Organisation of African unity (OAU) has just given is support to the rebels. Prime Minister Suarez was also expected to discuss with king Hassan the future of the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla on the northern coast of Morocco, following the increase in bilateral co-operation.