Lucia-Ramirez Reaffirms Colombia’s Decision to Extend Consular Jurisdiction in Kingdom to Include the Moroccan Sahara

The Colombian embassy in Rabat will provide consular services throughout the entire Moroccan territory, including the Sahara, underlined Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Colombia, Marta Lucia Ramirez.

“I reiterate that the consular services provided by the Colombian embassy in Morocco will be carried out in coordination with the Moroccan authorities and will cover the entire Moroccan territory, including the Sahara,” said Lucia Ramirez, on the sidelines of her visit to Morocco.

The Colombian official, who recently returned from an official visit to the Kingdom, stated that the “extension of consular assistance has no impact on Moroccan and Colombian diplomatic or consular relations with third countries,” adding that consular assistance in the Sahara will facilitate services to Colombians.

“As Colombia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, my responsibility is to ensure that every Colombian abroad knows that they can go to the nearest Colombian embassy or consulate in case of need,” she said.

Lucia Ramirez noted that, as a result of her visit to Morocco, which represents the outstanding level of relations between Colombia and the Kingdom, the agreement on mutual exemption of visas for holders of ordinary passports would enter into force on November 28 for short-term travel.

“We are sure that this agreement will exponentially increase the flow of travel between the two countries, both for tourism and for investment and bilateral trade,” she stressed, noting that this flow of travelers will include those who travel to North Africa, as well as those in the Sahara.”

“All of the above will serve the economic recovery, investment, tourism and employment in our two countries,” she said.

On the Sahara issue, Lucia Ramirez reaffirmed her country’s position, recognizing the importance of the Moroccan autonomy initiative, all of the UN Secretary General’s efforts, the appointment of his new Personal Envoy Staffan de Mistura, and the relevant Security Council resolutions to achieve a realistic and lasting political solution, based on the compromise of all parties, to end an issue that Morocco considers vital in the context of its territorial integrity.

With these statements, Colombia’s Vice-President confirms unequivocally the content of the joint statement issued on October 28, 2021, following her meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita, particularly paragraphs 8 and 9 of this document, which include the recognition of the importance of the autonomy plan and the decision to extend Colombia’s consular services in the Moroccan Sahara.

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