The diplomatic crisis between Morocco and Spain has been worsening day by day since the hospitalisation of Brahim Ghali, leader of the Polisario in Logroño, under the assumed name of Mohamed Ben Battouche, of Algerian nationality. The first vice-president of the Spanish government, Carmen Calvo, accuses Rabat of having exceeded « the limit of good neighbourliness ».
Moroccan-Spanish relations are going through a major crisis after the reception, under a false identity, of Brahim Ghali, in close consultation with the generals in Algiers. After the exit of the ambassador of the Cherifian kingdom in Madrid, Karima Benyaich, recalled from her post, a few weeks ago, by her hierarchy, Spain was keen to respond. In an interview with the Andalusian regional television Canal Sur, Carmen Calvo charges Rabat. She claims that the kingdom has exceeded « the limit of good neighbourliness » for having allowed an « assault on the Spanish borders in the autonomous city of Sebta ».
Between 8,000 and 9,000 illegal migrants had entered the enclave at the beginning of last week in response to the hospitalisation of Brahim Ghali, leader of the Polisario Front in Logroño, under the assumed name of Mohamed Ben Battouche, an Algerian national. « We want to respect Morocco, but what has happened cannot happen again, » she said.
For Carmen Calvo, this is an aggression that the Spanish authorities will not allow. Referring to the reception of the Polisario Front leader under a false identity, at the request of Algeria, she said that Spain is « a sovereign country ». « We are a country that is sovereign of our policies and we take decisions according to our policies, » Carmen Calvo said.
As a reminder, several complaints have been filed against the Polisario leader in Spain by Sahrawi dissidents of the Polisario and human rights associations for « war crimes », « torture, sequestration », « kidnappings, disappearances », « rape ». It took an arm wrestling match initiated by Morocco for the National Court of Madrid, which has been pursuing him since 2016, to finally agree to hear him, on 1 June, by video conference, from the San Pedro hospital, where the separatist leader is convalescing at the expense of Spanish taxpayers.