Ceuta and Melilla spark a spat between Morocco’s House of Councillors and Spain’s Defense Minister

Enaam Mayara, the head of the House of Councilors, made some remarks regarding the sovereignty of Ceuta and Melilla. Spain’s minister of defense, Margarita Robles, has responded.

A nationalist Istiqlal party member named Naam Mayara had proposed that the “occupied” cities will eventually be reclaimed by diplomacy rather than force.

“Ceuta and Melilla are Spanish; there is nothing more to dispute,” Robles declared with “absolute and entire authority.”

Robles, quoted by Europa Press, said, “I feel very Ceut and Melillense because I feel Spanish,” avoiding a direct response to Mayara’s remarks in favor of emphasizing her personal ties to the two cities.

Robles merely said that there was no discussion on the subject when asked if the Spanish government would ask Morocco for a clarification.

Spain and Morocco have long had disagreements over the sovereignty of Ceuta and Melilla, with Spain claiming that they are an essential component of its territory while Morocco contests this.

Mayara’s remarks are especially relevant because the Istiqlal party, of which she is a member, is a component of the tripartite party led by the Moroccan government.

During a gathering hosted by the Istiqlal women’s organization, Mayara made the remarks. The conference’s theme was “Fundamentals and Possibilities one year after the new stage of Spanish-Moroccan relations.”

In a meeting video that Facebook made available, Mayara stated that “Spanish colonization continues in Ceuta and Melilla.”

The Istiqlal, he continued, “did not stop and won’t stop talking about colonization in these two cities and the potential solutions to recover them.” Additionally, he highlighted that neither city “will be subject to blackmail”.

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