Moroccan ex-strongman calls for pragmatism
Former interior minister of Morocco, Driss Basri, considered a hardliner with a questionable human rights record, called for Algeria and Morocco to show pragmatism in the Sahara conflict in an interview published Thursday November 18 in the Algerian daily El Watan.
Basri claimed in the interview that it takes wisdom and intelligence to solve the long-standing problem between Algeria and Morocco. Basri argued in the interview that a referendum on autonomy would resolve the problem definitively especially because the two countries had both taken concrete steps.
He added that the Moroccan government arms and advises Polisario, an army and political movement in the disputed Sahara, region while blaming them for the conflict – an intolerable situation.
Previously Basri expressed similar views in favor of a referendum to the Spanish daily La Razon. In response he was chastised in the Moroccan press for a criminal act.
The former minister lives in Paris and has been more or less ostracized since the present King Mohammad VI ascended the throne and removed him from his position. The former minister continues to be very unpopular in Morocco. (albawaba.com)