Habboub Cherkaoui: Algeria is the Only Country Refusing Cooperation with Morocco

Morocco continues to collaborate within the framework of the country’s vigilance policy.

Morocco continues to collaborate within the framework of the country’s vigilance policy.

In an interview with Medias24, Habboub Cherkaoui, the new director of the Central Bureau of Judicial Investigations (BCIJ), discussed the situation in Sahel region, and the level of international cooperation, including that with Algeria, which is at a complete standstill.

When talking about the terrorist threats facing the Sahel region, Cherkaoui said, “if indeed no one is safe, it is because of the situation in the Sahel, which is a fertile area for terrorist organizations”, explaining that there is a total lack of control and coordination between the states of the Sahel region, which includes Mali, Chad, Niger, Burkina Faso and “to a much lesser extent, Mauritania”.

In this regard, the Director of BCIJ noted that Mauritania has taken measures to end the porosity of its borders and prevent terrorist groups from circulating there; such as the Support Group for Islam and Muslims (GSIM), Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS), in addition to Jund al Khalifa, Boko Haram and many other dangerous organizations.

As for cooperation between Moroccan, Chadian, Malian, and Mauritanian security establishments, Cherkaoui said that in terms of south-south cooperation, “there is indeed regular collaboration, particularly through training sessions that take place in Morocco within the DGST and other security establishments”, adding, “for my part, I have made several visits to my counterparts as part of training sessions with Tanzania, Madagascar, Guinea Conakry, Gabon and Mauritania.”

Regarding Moroccan-Algerian cooperation in this field, the BCIJ’s Director said, “there is, to our great regret, no open channel of communication in terms of information exchange or even security training”, noting that cooperation between the two countries has been “at a standstill for decades”.

Cherkaoui also added that, regardless of the lack of collaboration between Morocco and Algeria, “it is a pressing need and a duty to communicate information that can prevent a bloodbath”, because terrorism is above all “the enemy of citizens”.

It is noted that there have been several attempts to import attacks such as that of an Algerian named Hocine Dahous, belonging to the terrorist group Jund al Khalifa, who had a terrorist project against Morocco and who was arrested, in 2015, by the DGST in the region of Bni Drar next to the city of Berkane.

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