Morocco and Algeria have embarked on an arms race, following the US recognition of the Moroccanness of Western Sahara. This is at least what the magazine The Africa Report reveals. The two countries are sourcing from different markets.
The Algerian and Moroccan armies (ranked respectively 2nd and 5th on the African continent) are releasing significant funds for the acquisition of latest generation military equipment, reports The Africa Report. The two countries are sourcing from different markets. Morocco has a preference for American and French weapons, while Algeria turns to Russian-made weapons.
Last January, Morocco acquired the Patriot air defence system from the US. It also acquired two Ground Master 400 radars from the French manufacturer Thales Group and seven radars from the American defence giant Lockheed Martin… Morocco has American-made F-16 aircraft.
Algeria has a wide range of high-quality radar systems, such as the Russian-made Rezonans-NE and the Chinese YLC-8B. The Algerian army has also acquired Russian fighters, including Sukhoi fighters with high manoeuvring capabilities.
Tensions between Morocco and Algeria have risen sharply in recent months. At issue is the military intervention of the Royal Armed Forces (FAR) at the Guerguerat border post blocked by the Polisario Front, to unblock road traffic to Mauritania. Algeria did not appreciate this Moroccan intervention, and did not fail to castigate it.
It should be recalled that Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has never ceased to reaffirm his support for the Polisario. « There is no solution to the Saharawi issue, apart from the self-determination of the Saharawi people. The Sahara issue is a case of decolonisation, » he said in his speech on the second anniversary of the Hirak. For its part, Morocco maintains its autonomy plan for Western Sahara under its sovereignty.