Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Morocco and Wikileaks - new material
Any doubts about the Spanish Government's attitude to the ongoing dispute in the Moroccan Sahara region are cleared up by the latest documents provided by Wikileaks. Right from the start the Spanish Government backed a proposal to turn Sahara into an autonomous community within Morocco. The leaked telegrams sent between Embassies in the States, Madrid, Rabat and Paris and uncovered by Wikileaks were published in Spanish newspaper El Pais on Tuesday.
In 2006, the then Foreign Affairs Minister, Miguel Ángel Moratinos, sent a proposal - on un-headed paper, according to the paper - suggesting that talks cease to be about independence and sovereignty (for the Sahrawis) and instead about backing "regionalization, autonomy and self-government".
"A similar solution to the one offered by Spain to Catalonia," proposed Moratinos, while Spanish civil servants agreed that independence was not a realistic option.
When in 2007 Morocco presented its document proposing autonomy for Sahara, according to the leaked communications Moratinos was unsatisfied with the result and asked for more generosity on the part of the Moroccans. The same telegrams revealed that Spanish Diplomacy considered that the situation was made more difficult by the strength of the French pro-Moroccan stance.