wikileaks ico  Home papers ico  Cables mirror and Afghan War Diary privacy policy Privacy
Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
08RABAT473
2008-05-21 14:13:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Rabat
Cable title:  

SENIOR GOM OFFICIAL ON AQIM

Tags:  PTER KISL XA MO 
pdf how-to read a cable
VZCZCXYZ0014
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHRB #0473 1421413
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 211413Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY RABAT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8620
INFO RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS 4791
RUEHBP/AMEMBASSY BAMAKO 0105
RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR 0456
RUEHNM/AMEMBASSY NIAMEY 1158
RUEHNK/AMEMBASSY NOUAKCHOTT 3750
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS 9629
RUEHCL/AMCONSUL CASABLANCA 4109
						C O N F I D E N T I A L RABAT 000473 

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/14/2018
TAGS: PTER KISL XA MO
SUBJECT: SENIOR GOM OFFICIAL ON AQIM

REF: A. A. 07 RABAT 1105

B. B. RABAT 171

C. C. RABAT 398

D. D. RABAT 400

E. E. RABAT 422

Classified By: (C) Classified by Political Counselor Craig Karp for rea
sons 1.4 (b) and (d).



1. (C) Summary: A senior Moroccan Ministry of Foreign
Affairs official noted May 13 that the Government of Moroccan
perceived the regional terrorist threat as serious but
manageable. He described the nature of terrorists affiliated
with Al Qaeda in the Lands of the Maghreb, estimating that
the group contains between 800 and 1000 fighters, throughout
the Maghreb, particularly in southern Algeria and regions
beyond the border. He described Moroccan efforts to counter
terrorism in Morocco, noting that while enforcement has been
relatively successful, more needed to be done to promote
education, moderate religious discourse and economic
development. End Summary.

Morocco,s Terrorist Problem


--------------------------





2. (C) On May 13, Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA)
Director General of Bilateral Relations Ambassador Youssef
Amrani hosted a group of National Defense University students
for a discussion of Moroccan Foreign policy issues and
engagement with the U.S. Among other issues (septel), Amrani
related that terrorism is causing the government of Morocco
(GOM) significant concern and has proved difficult to combat.
Terrorist cells are decentralized and dispersed, making them
difficult to contain (ref. E). The major terrorist group in
the region, AQIM is taking advantage of the absence of strong
central governments in the Sahel and the weak socio-economic
position of the population in order to move in to desert and
mountainous spaces mostly outside Morocco. Presently, the
GOM estimates there are between 800 and 1000 fighters
associated with AQIM in the region.



3. (C) Highlighting the recent success of Moroccan police
and intelligence services (ref. B), Amrani admitted more
needed to be done while reiterating GOM,s long-term approach
to fighting terrorism. Amrani pointed to GOM efforts to
increase educational opportunities, moderate religious
teaching, promote democratic reforms and ameliorate the
common Moroccan,s economic standing as positive approaches
the GOM has taken to counter terrorism (for an overview of
the extremist/terrorist situation in Morocco and the GOM,s
response, see refs. C, D and E).



4. (C) In addition to internal reforms, Amrani stressed the
importance of cooperation between the GOM and other
governments in the region. Specifically highlighting
Morocco,s difficult bilateral relationship with Algeria,
Amrani stated that their counter terrorism cooperation may be
the only field wherein the two governments are fully
cooperating.


*****************************************
Visit Embassy Rabat's Classified Website;
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/nea/rabat
*****************************************

Riley