AU Summit: A Gloomy Week for the Polisario

The Polisario has been shaken this week, first by the triumphant return of Morocco to the African Union on Monday and secondly by the speech delivered by King Mohammed VI on Tuesday in the Ethiopian capital. African leaders hailed the strong messages conveyed by the cordial and pan-African royal address.

This was undoubtedly the climax of the 28th African Union summit held in Addis Ababa January 30-31. Addressing his African peers following Morocco’s return to his African family, Mohammed VI delivered a speech underpinned by his sincere love and earnest commitment for Africa.

The royal address, which destabilized the representatives of Algeria and the Polisario, has, on the contrary, conquered the African leaders present in the conference hall.

“It is so good to be back home, after having been away for too long! It is a good day when you can show your affection for your beloved home! Africa is my continent, and my home.  I am home at last and happily reunited with you. I have missed you all.” It was with these words that the King started his speech.

The warm tone of the speech was highly applauded by attending Heads of State, diplomats and AU officials. Yet, it was not the introduction only that moved the audience. Mohammed VI raised several key issues concerning the development of the continent and the strengthening of inter-African partnerships, major axes of the vision upheld by the King of Morocco to bolster a South-South cooperation underpinned by solidarity.

The King who also stressed the need for a more ambitious regional integration in Africa, deplored the paralysis of this integration in the Maghreb, saying “the flame of the Arab Maghreb Union has faded, because faith in a common interest has vanished! The mobilizing momentum of the Maghreb ideal, advocated by the pioneers in the 1950s, has been betrayed.”

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