France blackmails Morocco with visas… and democracy is the door to end the Sahara conflict

In this interview, Nabila Mounib, general secretary of the United Socialist Party, talks about the economic and social situation in the Kingdom after the crisis in Ukraine, and follows up on what she describes as “government errors” in responding to the demands of Moroccans , especially with regard to rising consumer prices.

Mounib also sheds light on the objectives of the “Parisian campaign” towards Rabat following the reduction in the number of visas granted to Moroccans, and also draws attention to the justifications for the ambiguous French position on the Moroccan Sahara issue, and in the same context it refers to the solutions offered to put an end to the conflict.

Here is the full conversation:

The Progress and Socialism Party announced that it will hold talks with the United Socialist Party on national policy issues. Will it be an opportunity for bilateral coordination on issues that concern the opposition?

First of all, it should be noted that joint cooperation is not only about political action; In fact, there are a number of research institutions continuously working on social, economic and cultural issues in the Kingdom. Here, we are talking about Bensaid Ait Ydr Study and Research Center, Abdel Rahim Bouabid Foundation, Ali Yata Foundation, Mohamed Abed Al Jabri Foundation, Belhassan El Wazzani Foundation and others.

Secondly, the meeting of the Political Bureau of the United Socialist Party and the Party for Progress and Socialism is part of the initiative that we launched towards all the Moroccan parties, so that each party assumes its responsibility for what is currently happening in the country, especially in the face of deteriorating human rights conditions, the deterioration of citizens’ purchasing power and the high prices of consumer goods.

The parties should play their pioneering roles, as the “democratic bloc” did, to spare the country a heart attack during the reign of the late King Hassan II. The current national context demands the overcoming of differences, the co-responsibility of generating a historical reconciliation between the State and society, and developing a renewed patriotism.

Thirdly, the communication program of the Unified Socialist Party will not be limited only to the parties, but will also include serious associations of civil society, where round tables will be held with thinkers, intellectuals and politicians to present conclusions related to the general situation in our country during the recent period.

Political calculations are never present in the perception of the United Socialist Party for Reform in Morocco, because we want the best for this country; This calls for the need to renew the psyche of the left, so as not to become like the global left that surrendered to globalization and became a right-wing left.

Returning to the difficult social and economic conditions of Morocco. We note that the government is not responding adequately to the expectations of Moroccans due to the predominant traditional communication method. What do you think of the political communication of the current government?

The communication performance of the current government is very poor, because the government has not been able to bring its point of view closer to the citizens. The evidence of this is the overwhelming social anger among people due to high prices, especially fuel prices. While the government limits itself to the seminars of its official spokesperson to clarify its official actions.

Now, a year has passed since the current government took office, which means that 20 percent of the government’s time has passed; But the political approach of previous governments remains the same in this government. Added to this is the unreality of the government program that includes unrealistic political promises.

The government must look at the reality of the informal sector, which cannot find anyone to support it in the difficult economic situation. We must not face it only with a tributary logic; This calls for the need to reform this sector and integrate it into official economic work.

Faced with all these economic, political and social challenges, we find that the government is absent in the management of large archives, even from a communication point of view. Because the citizen wants to understand the nature of the public policies adopted, and that will only be possible through the official media with all available communication channels.

The United Socialist Party participated in the elections on September 8 and won many seats in various territorial groups. How do you see the political work of these advisers with this one-of-a-kind experience?

Frankly, I am proud of the work that my comrades in the elected councils are doing, whether in Casablanca, Fez, Meknes, Tangier, Agadir, Oujda and other cities. The population praised our party’s performance in those areas, because the advisers have the qualities of integrity, independence and efficiency.

In light of our talk on government communication, I must refer to the pioneering political and communication experience of the party in Morocco, and it is related to the “political podcast”, where advisers create many videos to inform public opinion of the achievements field in those elected councils.

All this aims to link responsibility with accountability, a slogan that we have always demanded in the Moroccan political scene. But the reality is different, most of the elected are absent from the sessions of the elected councils, they never communicate with the population, they are only interested in personal dealings.

However, the United Socialist Party confronted these useless political practices and was interested in permanent communication with citizens, broadcasting the council sessions on social networks, writing weekly statements on the result, correspondence with ministerial authorities concerned about the problems of the regions and communicate with the press on social and political issues.

The political debate on reducing the number of French visas granted to Moroccans continues in society, given the diplomatic tension between Rabat and Paris for months. What is your comment on the French measures towards Morocco?

France blackmails Morocco to force it to submit to its demands in the dispute over the Moroccan Sahara issue. It is inconceivable that highly qualified Moroccan executives should be prevented from entering French territory, despite having complied with all the visa requirements. The time has come for a definitive break with France, which plundered all our economic wealth.

Morocco is a loser in any case with France, because of the unfair association; Perhaps the Moroccan tendency to award the TGV to China has provoked the anger of the Elysée Palace with Rabat. Today’s world speaks the language of interests, and there is no place in it for passion or history; What requires working with this principle to seek successful alliances.

France has never recognized the Moroccan nature of the Sahara, despite its clear knowledge of the merits of the file; This confirms the true French objectives of its permanent presence in the Maghreb region as a whole. France practices political blackmail against Morocco and only wants to obtain economic and commercial privileges; But our corrupt political elites help her.

Morocco must free itself from French influence in the future, because France built its state on the basis of unfair agreements with the Maghreb, including the Aix-Liban agreement. While France has turned to Algeria and Germany to Morocco, the countries of the region remain divided.

The UN Personal Envoy is on a new regional tour to the region to study points of view on the Moroccan Sahara issue; But the political process continues to falter as a result of the ineffectiveness of the UN resolutions on the file. What is the party’s vision to resolve the artificial conflict?

Morocco, as the legitimate owner, would have thought that the international community would support it if it presented legal, historical and administrative arguments related to the Moroccan nature of the Sahara, whether in relation to loyalty documents, old maps, the loyalty of the Saharan tribes, or academic studies; But the opposite happened.

The world does not speak in the language of truth, but in the language of interests; This requires a review of the parallel diplomacy, which is not up to expectations, and the strengthening of the internal front through the construction of democracy and human rights, which would contribute to speeding up the resolution of the artificial conflict.

For example, we rely heavily on foreign experts and diplomatic lobbyists abroad; Although we have high-level Moroccan competences, if the state gave them the opportunity, they would have effectively contributed to convincing the international community of the effectiveness of the Moroccan proposal to the conflict.

We, as leftists, do not agree with the global left that adopts the self-determination proposal; But the trend must be read in the context of the Cold War when it sided with the Soviet Union, which made it hostile to the monarchies that supported the American pole at the time.

But the Moroccan left arrived on time and advocated the Moroccanness of the Sahara in international forums. Here we mention comrade Mohamed Bensaïd Ait Yedder, who planned to organize an international symposium in Morocco in 2015 on the dossier, and summoned some 400 guests from the “Polisario”, Algeria, Mauritania, the United Nations, Tunisia and many Africans; However, the event was canceled due to lack of official support to organize the meeting, costing a huge budget.

It should also be noted that Mohamed Bensaïd Ait Yedder had summoned a foreign delegation to attend a meeting organized by the Popular Democratic Action Organization, and took the opportunity to organize a parallel visit to the Moroccan Sahara; This made the delegation fascinated by what was achieved on the ground, and it admitted that it was not aware of the merits of the dossier, except for what is being circulated in the international media.

There were errors on the part of the Moroccan State in the management of the file; But the autonomy initiative in the southern provinces continues to be the realistic solution to the file, and we should defend it in international forums, because it is a matter of land. The desert is our land, and we will not abandon it; However, the solution must lie within the framework of the integration of the Maghreb countries.