Visit to Morocco of Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov on November 22-23 visited the Kingdom of Morocco as part of a working trip to the Maghreb countries. He was received by King Mohammed VI of Morocco, to whom he conveyed a message from President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, had a conversation with Prime Minister Driss Jettou and held talks with his Moroccan counterpart, Mohamed Benaisa.
In the course of the meetings the sides discussed a broad range of pressing international and regional problems, on which they confirmed the similarity or identity of the positions of the two countries, and the state of, and prospects for mutually beneficial Russian-Moroccan cooperation.
Priority attention, with emphasis on strengthening the coordination of efforts by the international community, was paid to consideration of the problems of new challenges and threats, terrorism in the first place. Russia and Morocco resolutely reject attempts to identify terrorism with any nationality, religion or cultural tradition, and stand for protecting, through a mutually respectful dialogue among civilizations, the universal values of peoples in their striving for freedom and justice.
In discussing the state of affairs in Middle East settlement the importance was emphasized of developing the positive trends evident in the context of Israel's withdrawal of its troops and settlements from the Gaza Strip and from a part of the West Bank. A common view was expressed about the need for the sides to implement the provisions of the Road Map, which is an agreed-upon international legal base for the peace process in the region. Implementing its provisions in full opens the way to the creation of an independent Palestinian state, to its coexistence in peace and security with Israel, and to the achievement of a comprehensive, just and complete peace in the region on the basis of UN Security Council Resolutions 242, 338 and 1397. The sides concurred that it is necessary to prevent any new hotbeds of tension from arising in the region.
The sides affirmed the unalternative character of a political solution to the problem of Western Sahara and the necessity for continuing efforts under the aegis of the UN to arrive at its just and mutually acceptable settlement.
An exchange of views on the situation in Iraq, on the state of affairs in the Mediterranean and on the African continent and on other regional problems also took place.
Special attention was devoted to a substantive discussion of the question of deepening the Russian-Moroccan political dialogue and of improving bilateral ties in various fields, including those in the investment sphere, in accordance with the letter and spirit of the Declaration on Strategic Partnership Between the Russian Federation and the Kingdom of Morocco, signed in the course of the bilateral summit in October 2002.
November 23, 2005