上个月， 路透社报道 that 摩洛哥 recalled its ambassador to 沙特阿拉伯, reflecting rising tensions between the two allies. Even though Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita 官方否认 the reports, the confusion surrounding it nonetheless reinforced the perception that Moroccan-Saudi relations have reached a low point. The reports about the recall came after the pro-Saudi news outlet Al Arabiya broadcasted a documentary that questioned 摩洛哥’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara. Such a move threatens Rabat’s number one foreign policy priority: recognition of 摩洛哥’s control over the disputed territory.
After the threat of a full-scale uprising subsided, 摩洛哥 和 Jordan received an increasing amount of foreign investment from 和 secured major trade agreements with GCC countries. 沙特阿拉伯 和 the United Arab Emirates became two of the 外国投资的主要来源 in 摩洛哥. Military 和 defense cooperation also skyrocketed after the Moroccan Royal Armed Forces 和 the Saudi armed forces 签订协议 导致沙特向摩洛哥军队投资了220亿美元。
Family ties also link the two countries. Moroccan King Mohammed VI’s cousins, Moulay Hicham 和 Moulay Ismail, are the cousins of Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal—one of the wealthiest businessmen in the world. The Saudi royal family owns multiple palaces across 摩洛哥, 和 Saudi royals have been visited for business 和 leisure for decades. In 2017, King Salman reportedly 花费 在他的摩洛哥暑假期间赚了1亿美元。
Thus, 摩洛哥 appears to feel more confident in asserting its independence while also attempting to retain good relations with both sides of the GCC dispute, as well as the United States 和 the European Union. This strategy reflects Rabat’s continued focus on ensuring international 支持 for its control over the Western Sahara.
As the Moroccans attempted not to take sides, 沙特阿拉伯 found ways to express its discontent. In June 2018, for instance, 沙特阿拉伯 (plus the United Arab Emirates 和 Bahrain) voted against 摩洛哥’s bid 主办2026年世界杯在传统的阿拉伯外交中， 报告浮出水面 去年11月，在卡舒格（Khashoggi）被谋杀后，摩洛哥当局在阿拉伯世界巡回演出期间拒绝接待MBS，穆罕默德六世国王（King Mohammed VI）拒绝了与他会面的邀请。这种表面上的冷落是在国际社会对沙特阿拉伯施加最大压力之时发生的，甚至来自美国等盟国。来自另一个中东君主制和长期盟友的这种公开拒绝加剧了摩洛哥-沙特关系的降温。
最后，今年初摩洛哥外交大臣布尔塔（Bourita） 告诉半岛电视台 that 摩洛哥 was 重新评估其参与 在也门战争中, 指出人道主义局势。 报告书 then emerged a couple weeks later that 摩洛哥 had ended its participation in the Saudi-led coalition. The announcement likely frustrated the Saudis (not least because it was discussed on the Qatar-based Al Jazeera ）， but it should not have been much of a surprise. While 摩洛哥 was one of the first countries to 支持 the Saudi-led coalition in 2015, it 慢慢缩小 随着战争的进行，它获得了军事支持。
However, 摩洛哥 has not been immune to Saudi pressure. In May 2018, 摩洛哥 坏了 off diplomatic relations with Iran just after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave his speech outlining the Iranian threat 和 a couple weeks before President Trump announced the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA. The Moroccan foreign minister 声称 that Iran was supplying weapons to the Western Sahara independence movement (and 摩洛哥’s number one enemy), the Polisario, through a Hezbollah intermediary in Algeria, 摩洛哥’s main regional rival.
但是，针对伊朗的这一举动可能是由于需要加强与美国和沙特领导的欧盟的关系。最近的报告也 声称 that 摩洛哥’s foreign minister held secret meetings with Netanyahu during the U.N. General Assembly meeting in September 2018, even though the two states have not maintained diplomatic relations since 2000, but their 商业联系 是一个公开的秘密。
摩洛哥’s more conservative foreign policy is primarily shaped by shoring up international 支持 for its claims to the Western Sahara territory, which 摩洛哥 considers its “southern provinces.” This series of events in 2018 took place in the backdrop of renewed U.N. 和 U.S. interest in the Western Sahara dispute.
自约翰·博尔顿（John Bolton）于2018年3月加入特朗普政府以来，美国放大了解决冲突的需求。博尔顿 告诉纽约客 that “he was eager to end the conflict,” 和 pro-state media in 摩洛哥 view him as sympathetic to the Polisario movement—a worrying development for 摩洛哥. Nonetheless, for the first time in six years, negotiations between 摩洛哥, the Polisario, Algeria, 和 Mauritania took place in December 2018. Another round of talks are 预期会发生 这个月。
With this backdrop in mind, is there a likelihood for a major shift in 摩洛哥’s foreign policy that would more fundamentally align it with the Qatar-Turkey regional alliance, in more direct opposition to the Saudi-bloc? The answer is probably not. Bourita recently 轻描淡写的报告 of strained relations. 摩洛哥 has a long history of strong relations with 沙特阿拉伯, 和 even with the current tensions, it doesn’t seem to symbolize a major break in ties.
当前沙特与摩洛哥之间的紧张局势是非同寻常的，但不太可能预示着摩洛哥外交政策的重大转变。尽管多年来阿拉伯君主制一直存在分歧，并且继续如此，但最终它们在重要的时候相互帮助，但要理解，一个阿拉伯君主制的垮台将在当代树立危险的地区先例（最后一个阿拉伯君主制下台是1953年的埃及，1958年的伊拉克和1969年的利比亚）。海湾合作委员会的异想天开 邀请函 of 摩洛哥 和 Jordan to join the group amidst the Arab Spring; Saudi military 支持 巴林在2011年起义期间；沙特，阿联酋和科威特 经济支持 约旦的经济挑战全部证明了阿拉伯君主制最终团结在一起的事实。但与此同时，我们应该期待摩洛哥与沙特关系的凉爽继续。