Morocco / by Lewis McKinnon

Morocco was accused by the Polisario Front of violating a 1991 ceasefire agreement by sending troops into the Western Sahara. The King of Morocco, King Mohammed Vl, made a speech on 21 August urging Moroccans abroad to defend and uphold a tolerant version of Islam. The President of the Moroccan National Olympic Committee, Hosni Benslimane, called a meeting of the country’s sporting commission leaders on 29 August to discuss Morocco’s poor performance at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Morocco agreed to support Niger in its military campaign against Boko Haram on 1 August. The Moroccan Interior Ministry announced on 16 August that it had dismantled another Islamic State (IS) cell. Morocco’s Directorate of National Security (DGSN) has ordered all Moroccan security officers to be retrained in firearms techniques. The Polisario Front moved 200 armed troops into the buffer zone between Morocco and Mauritania on 28 August. United States (US) defence company Raytheon won a contract to supply optically tracked wire-guided (TOW) missiles to Morocco. Morocco will play host to a new arms manufacturing plant run jointly by British firm Chemring Military Products (CMP) and Belgian company Mecar. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Morocco fell by 34.9 per cent to MAD 12.3 billion in the first half of 2016. The number of Russian tourists visiting Morocco saw a 280 per cent increase in the first half of 2016, according to the Moroccan Regional Council of Tourism (CRT).