Morocco Reiterates in Riyadh its Commitment to International Efforts to Combat Terrorism
The Kingdom of Morocco has reaffirmed its ongoing commitment to international efforts to combat the terrorist threat, pursuant to the High Guidelines of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, which establish a multidimensional approach combining the achievement of security and peace with the goals of sustainable development and progress.
Speaking at the ministerial meeting of the Global Coalition against Daesh, held Thursday in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the director of Global Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccan Expatriates, Ismail Chakouri, praised the coalition's efforts, in particular the responses set out in the action plan adopted by the Africa Focus Group at its last meeting in Niamey in March, under the co-chairmanship of Morocco, Niger, Italy and the United States of America.
This action plan constitutes a clear Roadmap towards the enshrinement of the defeat of the Islamic State (IS), as it reflects the commitment of coalition members to implement the conclusions of the ministerial meeting held last year in Marrakech, particularly with regard to the identification of capacity-building priorities and needs, the confirmation of links between terrorist and separatist groups, as well as the adoption of a comprehensive approach focused on civil efforts, he stressed.
Chakouri added that achieving these priorities depends to a large extent on deploying effective responses at local level in the various hotbeds of the terrorist threat, while avoiding regional conflicts which significantly exacerbate terrorist threats.
On the other hand, he pointed out that the efforts of the global coalition have helped to roll back the terrorist threat of the Islamic State in the Middle East. This is evidenced, he explained, by the decline in terrorist attacks, the neutralization of the organization's leaders and the drying up of sources of funding and recruitment.
In light of these achievements, he added, the terrorist organization is tending to shift the focus of its activities to the African continent, particularly the Sahel and Sahara, where the terrorist threat is the main factor in the deterioration of stability and insecurity in the region.
In this respect, Chakouri stated that Africa is the only continent where three branches of the IS, as well as al-Qaeda, are active, in addition to 19 armed separatist movements operating in 22 countries, pointing out that in 2022, 43% of global terrorism victims were recorded in the Sahel region, compared to just 1% in 2007.
In addition, he reported an increase in terrorist attacks in the Sahel region of over 2,000% over the last fifteen years, stressing that terrorist groups continue to use advanced and modern technologies to achieve their goals, such as drones, virtual assets and encrypted communication platforms.
These data are sufficient to raise questions about the effectiveness of efforts to tackle the unprecedented expansion of the terrorist threat in Africa, as well as the reasons for the development of methods that create a fertile environment for the proliferation of the activities of transnational criminal groups and separatist movements, noted the Moroccan official.