Morocco to close its Algiers embassy after ties cut

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Morocco is to close its embassy in Algiers on Friday, an official source said, after Algeria severed ties with the kingdom over what it said were “hostile actions”.

From Friday, the embassy “will close, and the ambassador and all staff will be repatriated to Rabat”, the Moroccan source told AFP on Thursday.

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Algerian Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra's announcement of the rupture came after months of resurgent tensions between the North African rivals.

The two countries have long accused one another of backing opposition movements as proxies. Algeria's support for separatists in the disputed region of Western Sahara is a particular bone of contention for Rabat.

Morocco has called the severing of diplomatic ties “completely unjustified”, and said the decision was based on “false, even absurd pretexts”.

The source said Moroccan consulates in Algiers, Oran and Sidi Belabbes “will stay open”.

At the end of last month, King Mohamed VI deplored tensions with Algeria and invited its President Abdelmadjid Tebboune “to make wisdom prevail” and “to work in unison for the development of relations” between the two countries.

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