Morocco Algeria Border To Open Shortly

Washington, Morocco Board News--- After 15 years of closed Moroccan-Algerian border, and after many calls to open the border by Rabat and several Arab and Western capitals, sources in Algiers say that Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has taken the decision to reopen the closed border with Morocco, after the mediation by Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah that took place while he was recovering from surgery in Morocco.

Another source familiar with the issue of reopening the Moroccan-Algerian border said it  was also influenced by internal calculations in Algeria. Most Algerian tourists went to Tunisia to spend their holidays, and as long as Tunisia is now in a transitional phase after the overthrow of the dictator Benali, the only other alternative tourist destination is Morocco due to its geographical proximity, in addition to the tough measures imposed by France and the other "Schengen"countries on the granting of visas to Algerians.

A tourism executive in Morocco said that Morocco could host an additional 1.5 to 2 million tourists from Algeria annually, and this could be a shot in the arm for tourism, and also revive a number of projects in the east of the country, which were damaged by the earlier decision to close the border.

On the other hand, observers do not exclude the importance of the visit by U.S. envoy to North Africa and the Middle East William Burns to the region last week that addressed the relationship between Morocco and Algeria, and the need for normalization between the two neighbors to confront the major challenges faced by both systems of governance from the outbreak of demonstrations calling for reform, led by young people in this region.


Comments (35)  

0 #1 God willingMorcelli 2011-03-01 04:54
I have to see to believe.

I stopped relying on Bouteflika and his gangs.

Sometimes people get older and sick and they come to their senses and want to do good before they pass the baton to someone else, I hope that Boutef has this sort of awakening.
My main concern is not tourism, economy and all that, I just do not see that the people that we have the most in common with, we are prevented to unit with as it's done everywhere else.
0 #2 inch allahMorokkan 2011-03-01 06:26
I find it very dificult in the light of what's been hapenning (Aminatou Haidar, Event of Laayoune, support of polisario...etc ) that we are going to see a normalization of the relations between us and the algerians. I think that our governement will put the sahara issue first and will always continue to do so.
I don't think the algerians honnestly are looking for a vacationing spot like Saidia ...they can't afford it for one, second if Bouteflika governement is thinking their people needs more vacation time than bread...then i really don't have anything else to say besides than they can find some good deals on time share!!
0 #3 great newsOmar 2011-03-01 06:35
dis is reallly great news. the moroccan nd algerian ppl hav always been close nd logical ppl. morocco needs gaz nd oil as well as algeria needs agriculture products nd other things. if algeria nd morocco make one, believe me dey will go far. as a moroccan,dis is good news for me.
0 #4 Very unlikelyUssef 2011-03-01 06:47
For several reasons:
- Saudi Arabia doesn't have enough leverage on Algeria or Boutef to weigh on such highly ideological matter. On the contrary, I would expect it to make matters worse . Qatar would have been a more likely go between, but I doubt they have enough incentive to.
- Tunisia isn't going to be in trouble for so long. Surely the elections are to be held around June, which is a risk factor, but on the other hand, prices will be dirt cheap, and the incentive high to keep the visitors safe and happy because the aftermath of the revolution would have had time to mature by then.
- Algerian gov taking its citizens well-being in consideration, and in advance seems highly uncharacteristi c to me.
- US diplomats complained in the wikileaks about the stubbornness of Algeria regarding cooperation with Morocco in fighting terrorism and connected traffic. US couldn't sway them then and everyone knows terrorism is number one item on US agenda. But now we are supposed to believe William Burns broaches this unimportant matter to the US but central to Algeria's foreign policy and they agree just like that?

I second Morcelli, I need to see it to believe it.

PS: wouldn't it be great for Moroccans fleeing Libya to hop in a train in Tunisia and head home instead of waiting for overbooked planes and slow passenger ships?
0 #5 Or maybe...haras 2011-03-01 09:25
The move is part of a larger scale move related to renewable energy resources market, Algerians, not sure they can win the competition with their door closed, this might be their way to include us in their energy projects and take the lead...

They are throwing us a bone...
0 #6 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyDjamal 2011-03-01 09:39
SO on one hand, ALgerians are evil and have Hunger and on the other hand, you guys can't wait for the re-opening of the borders:-)
Guys, stop day dreaming, the border are not gig to be reopened any time soon,
Moroco and ALgeria have to work out their issues first before dreaming about the borders

If you seriously think that ALgerians can not afford SAidia, please explain to me why you gov. At all it's levels is begging for reopening ofnthe border?
fUnny, how most MOroccans in this blog have this idea that Morocco has the same living standards as EUrope;-) wake up guys, MOrocco and Algeria are Both part of e third world;-)
Jamal Mouhtadi
0 #7 Keep your friends close and your enemies a lot closerJamal Mouhtadi 2011-03-01 12:54
Algeria was doomed few weeks ago, Lybia came in the picture and took the spot light. Algeria is back in the game to cover Lybia Oil supply. Do not forget the US fleet is in the Med Sea, Morocco is the safest spot ,no one can afford to have crazy neighbor. We as Moroccan we should trust and verify.
0 #8 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyMorcelli 2011-03-01 20:36
Djamal , oddly enough, I agree with you
Ayoub Kabli
0 #9 selfemployedAyoub Kabli 2011-03-01 21:56
there is always light at the end of a tunnel.this is absolutely good news for both nations.more importantly is for the childish commentators from both sides is to stop bragging,who's country is better then the other.because whatever coaxed both parties to come to an agreement? is better for (Morogerians).
one love.
0 #10 @DjamalMorokkan 2011-03-02 00:35
My comment wasn't a blow to Algerians by no mean...Most of Algerians can't afford Saidia it is a fact ... same goes for most Moroccans as well.
Saidia Port de plaisance or Marina was built to compete with La costa del sol (Cheaper docking fees for boats, cheaper housing and hotels, same weather...etc).
Moroccan are smarter than that Djamal, we don't compare ourselfs to Europe, i think we are both poor countries with similar social issues and economical challenges(Whic h is weird since you guys have oil and gas and should be wealthier than us but that's another story!!)
As you said we are both third world countries no doubt, we just happen to be closer to Europe and you guys aren't that's all (This maybe another issue).
0 #11 riffi2010@aol.comriffi 2011-03-02 01:02
NO WAY!!!!! as long as the FLN and the DRS,Tewfik mediane is in the power,there will be no opening,the light in the end of the tunnel for norht africa is when algeria will have the ending like Tunisia and Egypt.he people who are in power now in algeria they will make a deal with the devil against their own mother.If you read french and somebody can translate this article it will be great.
Un Algerien
0 #12 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyUn Algerien 2011-03-02 02:57

I am an Algerian, and in the early 90's i spent many great vacations in Saidia, which has a sister Algerian city called Marsa Ben Mhidi, and so did many of my friends and family members.
As for the borders, lets put things in prospective, Algeria only closed the borders after Morocco imposed VISA on Algerians after the merrakach terrorist attack ,and expelled every Algerian in a very disgraceful way.
In other words, the closing of the border was just a reaction to Morocco's acts.


Try to get your facts straight, Algeria does not need or want for the borders to be open again, its the Moroccan gov. who keeps asking again and again for the re-openning of the borders.
As for your empty and cheap propaganda in regards of the DRS and the army:-)
ill say, try to clean your backyard before trying to slander Algeria.
Un Algerien
0 #13 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyUn Algerien 2011-03-02 04:21
Morokkan said " we just happen to be closer to Europe and you guys aren't that's all "
In more ways than you think.
0 #14 To Un Algerian (Secret agent)haras 2011-03-02 04:23
In your response to Riffi, you mention "your empty and cheap propaganda in regards of the DRS and the army:-) " ... Really, so what Algerian newspaper "le matin" publishes is Moroccan propaganda now? so you bash "le matin" to praise DRS. hmmmm

You add: "clean your backyard before trying to slander Algeria" really? like you did with your country and your own people? THANKS BUT NO THANKS...FOR REAL

For the borders, we just enjoy to remind the other Arabs how hypocrite it is for Algeria to still speak about Arab unity and good relations with neighboring states...

I find it funny that you are still talking about the Atlas Asni incident ... 17 years later... I am waiting for your response to this article:
So are you going to open the borders or are you willing for your solar energy projects to go down?
0 #15 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyMagrebi 2011-03-02 04:54
Algeria and Morocco should unite. Most of the people of Magreb consider each other like brothers. Uniting means economic growth and wealth for every Magrebi. From Tunis, Algeria till Morocco. The Magreb would have a population of over 100 million and will have strategic strong position. I'll stop typing because I'm waking up now:-)
Un Algerien
0 #16 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyUn Algerien 2011-03-02 05:48

Sorry, i missed the part where Morocco had become this Jeffersonian democracy with a living standards compared to the european one's
Morocco, wants the reopenning of the border because the whole Eastern part of the kingdom, needs the revenues that the Algerians would generate, Algeria, does not need Morocco but Morocco would benefit greatly from the re-openning of the borders.
Please spare me the BS "For the borders, we just enjoy to remind the other Arabs how hypocrite it is for Algeria to still speak about Arab unity and good relations with neighboring states..."
You know i would have agreed with you if your GOV. have asked once or twice for the re-openning of the borders to prove a point for example, but its day and night kind of thing and goes from your prime Minster to your king, come on guys, its humiliating to say the least, what part of "NO" we do not want to open the borders don't you guys get.

As all for all the project you talked about:-) again, Algeria does not need Morocco, we have enough desert to generate all the solar power we need and as far using Morocco as point of transit to Europe we can always build another Medgaz pipeline( that by passes Morocco to Spain), which was inaugurated this month.
I have nothing but respect toward our Moroccan brothers, i just can not tolerate hypocrites.
0 #17 To Un Algerianharas 2011-03-02 08:51
You wrote:“Sorry, i missed the part where Morocco had become this Jeffersonian democracy”
Well I missed that part too, where did I mention it? But I don’t praise butchers in my country either, especially if they took the lives of hundreds of thousands of my brothers and sisters like DRS did to you, that is of course if you are not yourself part of the DRS, in which case please accept my apologies for taking you for what you are not….
As for opening the borders, here is how it plays, Plan A, you open the borders, Algeria wins and Morocco wins, even though Algeria wins more than Morocco, I remember we had this discussion earlier when you had a different nickname… Plan B, you keep them closed, Algeria loses, Morocco loses, in this case Morocco can and should always point out that it is actually Algeria who is responsible for the situation, it is important for the uninformed people in Algeria and Morocco to have a clear idea on the actual facts and for the rest of Arabs to understand the truths of Algeria. I don't understand why you complain about us complaining?

As for what is humiliating part, to me, it is the look in your face now that your country is helping Ghaddafi kill his own people and providing him with logistics to accommodate his mercenaries … just so that you know I am not surprised
0 #18 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyHILMI 2011-03-02 10:46
0 #19 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open Shortlyborsa 2011-03-02 18:30
Not holding my breath on these rumours. The World knows Algeria is at fault by continuing to pursue out dated Cold War tactics. The borders will eventually open, but the question is will the Algerian Military Mafia regime still be in charge when the borders are finally open?
Un Algerien
0 #20 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyUn Algerien 2011-03-02 20:35
You can talk all you want about DRS this or DRS that at the end of the day your empty bla bla is not going
To change a thing.
The thing is you are not an Algerian and i

Just do not like discuss Algerian domestic politics a MOroccan.
What amazes me is that you keep talking about how evil we are
And how good MOrocco is and plan a about the borders and how it's just from the
GoOdness of your heart that you want to borders to be open again;$
Who do you think you are fooling?
Not a week goes by without
One of your official, minister or even king talk and beg about the reopening of the border.
Let's even assume as you said that we will benefit from the opening of
The borders , guess what we still
Do not want them open;-) what part of no don't you guys get, have
Shame and stop asking.
As for the khadafi support
Show me some proves? You know when airplanes fly in and out of a country, they would be detected by radars
And satelites.....etc
We know who is spreading the rumors;-)
A Moroccan
0 #21 ......A Moroccan 2011-03-02 22:34
There are 3 serious facts why the borders are still closed.

1- The Past (harb a rimal)
2- The Algerian support of Polisario
3- Algeria is becoming a hot spot for al Qaida.

seriously? i don't want the borders to be open until the fall of the Gov and until Algeria is secured since its still considered to be among the world's most dangerous places to visit.
we the Moroccans are living peacefully without this Algeria cuz all their Focus is making Morocco Going down which will never happen .
and that talkative dude (un algerian) u better go get a life cuz ur just bluffing.
0 #22 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyRiffi 2011-03-02 23:09
Something for you that make difference between your dictatorial regime and the moroccan legitimate monarchy
0 #23 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyDjamal 2011-03-03 00:18

Glad to see that we agree on something" the borders should remain shut" but please go tell that to your GOV. because you do not see any Algerian official talking about the matter compare that to your officials who won't let a week go by without begging to the borders to be open again. tell them to have some shame .
sorry to burst your bubble but Rama Yade( the French official) statement does not mean a thing to us, and what France and the french think of us is irrelevant to us:-)
If cared about France we could have still be part of France, but we chose otherways, glad to hear that you justify the legitimacy of your political system according to what a French wanna be has to say. or as MOROKKAN SAID and i am quoting here "we just happen to be closer to Europe and you guys aren't that's all "
0 #24 @ UN ALGERIEN Morokkan 2011-03-03 00:24
Here is answer to the below quote from you
I am an Algerian, and in the early 90's i spent many great vacations in Saidia, which has a sister Algerian city called Marsa Ben Mhidi, and so did many of my friends and family members
Saidia of the 90's isn't what it is today that's for one...second, if you came to my house (Morocco) and i welcomed you, why do you have to act this way toward us? We applyed a visa toward algerians so we can see who's coming to our home!! is that bad? if so then why didn't end your relations with...just about the rest of the world that is asking you for a visa?
0 #25 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyUssef 2011-03-03 02:28
Are open borders beneficial to Morocco? Yes. To Algeria? Yes. The difference is that Algeria can afford to throw away unrealized GDP growth, for decades to come. Morocco can't. But to say that only Morocco would benefit is untrue and stupid.
Frankly, I'm not very excited for borders to open, because in itself it doesn't mean much if there is no will to promote trade, and there isn't, but one should step a bit on his pride and hope for the best. An Egyptian proverb comes to mind.
Does Algeria have the means to be the number one power in the Maghreb? Yes. But, it's going at it the wrong way, by confrontation and aggression, thus failing with brio. I will not deny that seeing it brings me some satisfaction. In fact I couldn't care less if Algeria went to hell, if it weren't dangerous for us to have a hell hole that big next door.
For our officials to clamor and beg for the borders to open is fine by me though. At best, Algeria comes around and we get a slice of the pie, at worst Algeria doesn't which makes us look good and them bad. A nice PR touch.
But then, again, I don't think they'll come around. It's very hard for old leaders to change their ways.
0 #26 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyDjamal 2011-03-03 02:56
Morokkan said "We applyed a visa toward algerians so we can see who's coming to our home!! is that bad"
The person that applied the VISA was Idriss Albasri who imposed visa on All Algerian citizens and European citizens of Algerian origins and to add insult to injury expelled every Algerian from Morocco.
As a result of these action Algeria decided to close the border and impose visa on all Moroccan, FYI Algeria applies Reciprocity when it comes to visa, in other words if any country requires visas from Algerian, the citizen of that specific country will be required to have visa to enter Algeria and that goes for US AND European citizens.
In addition to that, as Algerians, we do not see any benefit from having open borders with Morocco and it does not matter how much your officials beg or ask, the borders will be close till further notice.
As for why the rest of the world ask us for visa's:-) it asks us as much as it ask Moroccans for visa, or did the EU AND THE US waived the visa for Moroccan citizens???
What i cannot understand, Most Moroccans in this blog have nothing but insults toward Algeria, so why is it that you guys want the borders to be reopened, or is it just because you guys are so kind and want to expose us as anti the great pan arab nation project:-)
0 #27 to Un algerianharas 2011-03-03 03:14
For the DRS, you're right, I won't change a thing, want a proof? the 200000 victims will still be dead no matter what I say and what you claim.

For our ministers or even king asking for the borders to be reopened, isn't their job to look out for their peoples interest? why isn't your midget looking out for his country's best interest? Algerian economists have shown that closing the borders costs Algeria 2 billion dollars a year!!! and for what reason are they closing the borders? you really buy that same old story from 17 years ago?

For Kadhafi support, those are not rumors, rather facts, the Libyan rebels have already made multiple pleas to Algeria to stop its support to Kadhafi and stop bringing Polisario mercenaries on their land to help an old ally and pay him back for past gracious support... it's funny -yet shameful- how things play....
0 #28 Knock off brothersSimohamedNY 2011-03-03 05:11
This back and forth arguments and personal insults between Moroccans and Algerians is what make the world watch and laugh! Here we have two "countries" whose people speak literally the same language (Darija), have the same history, culture, traditions, and most likely same DNA, and they are arguing about the stupid border. I am Moroccan, but i will say as it is: It was Morocco's fault during the period of Hassan II's dictatorship and Driss "l Bress"(i mean Barsi) lKalb that started it. Terrorist acts happened and there was serious mistrust between the two countries about who is supporting Islamists in Algeria and Algeria wanting to export its problems to Morocco. But if we had rational smart leaders, we wouldn't have closed the borders and treated our brothers and sisters from Algeria like sub-human. Now, having said that, i also blame Algeria for its continuous stupid support of the POLISARIO! I understand that it is not in Algeria’s best national interest to let go of the Sahara, but sooner or later, Sahra will be officially Moroccan because it is. I am sure things are much more complicated than what i am trying to show them to be, but let's just stop this nonsense of arguing about the borders. Some of my best friends are Algerian and i truly consider them family. We get along so well and we always hope that we can just get along. Go Morocco! Go Algeria!
0 #29 UMSUNION OF MAGHREB STATES 2011-03-03 07:30
Here is a soluton:

The people of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia should have a new movement; a protest to unite these three great countries. These three countries are quite insignificant on there own yet if they unite, they can be one of the world's greatest nations. Ofcourse it is easier said than done but I think such a nation would benefit every citizen in those countries if it is done right!!

Look at China, Russia, India, Canada, E.U., and the U.S. with its diverse peoples, cultures, and languages remain a strong united nation, while the nations of the Maghreb who aare similar in a million ways argue about who gave who a visa!
0 #30 Be your own Judge!Casawi 2011-03-03 10:16
To really see who is the beneficiary of this border opening, it's to set a chair and an unbrella at the border with a nice (Dkika) at your side, and start counting how many cars are coming from Algeria, and vice-versa. And then you can be the judge.
Imad Alhouari
0 #31 MrImad Alhouari 2011-03-03 18:02
i get really fed up of the orthodox comments about the moroccan-algeri an border opening .
The way we moroccan and algerian view it it s still like if we are in the cold war !!
very silly , the changes nowdays imposing on us to change the way we think , we should think ECONOMY ,PROSPERITY , UNITY , instead of algerian or moroccan , or what you get and what i get,
Let the one who work hard get no matter where he or she came from , please say good bye to the cold war mentalities , and welcome the unity ,and look forward for the progress of our arab maghreb , pls pls pls wake up
0 #32 Wake upMoh 2011-03-03 20:37
The rulers divide and the population argues. Both Morocco and Algeria need each other. Why? Because they are brothers and sisters. We are Muslims first and as such we KNOW that only God gives. Nothing belongs to the Algerians or the Moroccans. It all belongs to God. Stop using economics as a way to continue the argument. Look at the money in the hands of Al Mubarak, Al Gaddafi, Al Ben Ali, etc... The entire population argues and the rulers steal. We have much more in common then pure economics. We are brothers and sisters. Those borders are only to serve the rulers keep their populations enslaved because of the conflicts they generate. They turn Moroccans against Algerians and Algerians against Moroccans while they rip off the monies and the heads that dare raise a voice of reason. Looking at an Algerian and a Moroccan, hearing either one, smelling either one, I can hardly tell the difference. A stable and a prosperous Algeria is good for Morocco and the same is true in reverse. I wish people would rise above stupid economics and realize that they have been had for so long. There are no borders between Morocco and Algeria. When a stupid foreigner comes to take over Morocco I hope Algerians are ready to fight and when the same happens to Algeria I hope the same stands.

Isn't it enough that we are Muslims?
Moroccan for life
0 #33 Keep them close for now.Moroccan for life 2011-03-06 00:29
I strongly believe that the borders should remain close, especially now, given the current circumstances in North Africa. Morocco should beef up its security around the boarder and stop illegal immigration to Morocco. Otherwise, our country will be terrorized again and will impact tourism in Morocco, which plays a big role in the Moroccan economy.
We all agree that human basic need is food, therefore, I don't think Algerians will eat/drink gas; Algerians would love to see their basic needs satisfied (I am talking about varieties of goods, not just bread with few things).
Before, opening the boarders, Algeria should agree that Sahara is a Moroccan territory and stop supplying weapons to Polizario. I am sure all other things will follow smoothly.
Morocco and Algeria are meeting and having dialogue, we don’t know exactly who initiated this positive move. All talks are done behind doors and comments here are just speculation and swaggering about both countries. The fact is that both countries need to set down and solve their issues and come to an agreement. Due to the current North African movement, and the lessons learned from Tunisia and Lybia, the Government of both countries should fulfill the demands of its people. That is the only fight that both countries should take on and win, not be an obstacle for each other. Both should learn from each other and share good ideas.

Love and prosperity to both countries.
Un Algerien
0 #34 COMMENT_TITLE_R E Morocco Algeria Border To Open ShortlyUn Algerien 2011-03-06 05:47
Dear Moroccan for life,

With all due respect, Morocco is not in a position to lecture Algeria about what it should and should not do, and last time i checked, the Moroccan gov. was the one asking day and night for the borders to be open again, please show me or quote me a single Algerian official that demanded the re-openning of the border.
As for you Condescending remarks in regard of Algerians, ill only direct you to take a deep look at your backyard before starting to mock Algerians

0 #35 Do moroccans require a Visa to visit Algeria?Sousie 2012-03-01 21:39
Can anybody shed some light on this question. Do moroccan passport holders require a Visa to visit Algeria? the Algerian Embassy assured me that we didn't & i'm planning to visit in a month.

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