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Moroccan army commander visits Israeli military sites

Published February 19th, 2023 - 07:14 GMT
Israel and Morocco
Israeli and Moroccan flags are pictured during an official ceremony in Israel's Mediterranean coastal city of Tel Aviv, on September 13, 2022. (Photo by JACK GUEZ / AFP)

ALBAWABA - Morocco's Royal Armed Forces commander toured Israeli military sites for the first time since both countries agreed to normalize relations in 2020.

Mohamed Benouali, a Moroccan artillery inspector Maj. Gen.,  toured Israeli military sites as part of a "framework to strengthen corporation and coordination between the two countries’ armed forces," an Israeli army spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said the Moroccan wanted to "get closely acquainted with the military field challenges of the Israeli Artillery Corps", said the spokesperson, Avichay Adraee,  the Israeli army’s senior spokesperson for Arabic-language media.

Both Adraee and the Royal Moroccan Armed Forces posted the statement on social media, accompanied by the two countries’ flags, the hashtag #StrongerTogether, and several photographs documenting Benouali’s visit.

The visit drew a barrage of public Arab criticism of Morocco. "Morocco dispatched its artillery to occupied Palestine not liberate it, but to be hosted by the enemy," one person tweeted,

Israel and Morocco tweeted pictures of the tour, which showed Israeli and Moroccan military officials posing together for a picture. The posts bore hashtags, such as #StrongerTogether.

Israel and Morocco signed the U.S.-brokered Abraham Accords in 2020, setting the stage for the North African country to establish diplomatic relations with Rabat. A handful of Arab nations followed suit.

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