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Rabat – Amar Saadani, the former Secretary-General of Algeria’s ruling party, the National Liberation Front (FLN) , has reportedly requested political asylum in Morocco.
Algerian news outlet Le Soir d’Algerie quoted sources saying that Ammar was targeted by the Algerian justice in 2018.
Saadani’s concerns mounted after Aleria sentenced several former high-profile officials to heavy sentences as part of the country’s “accountability” reforms.
Saadani moved from France to Portugal a few months ago and is fearing extradition following the signing of an agreement between Algiers and Paris.
“He would then have chosen to take refuge in Morocco,” fearing extradition, the Algerian news outlet argued.
Amar Saadani, who is also president of the Algerian National People’s Assembly, frustrated many in the corridors of power in Algiers when he strongly criticized Algeria’s position on Western Sahara in a 2019 interview.
Speaking to TSA, one of Algeria’s leading French-speaking news outlets, Saadani condemned Algeria’s decision to back and finance Polisario.
The Sahara is “Moroccan and nothing else,” Amar said, citing historical facts.
Algeria has been “pouring huge sums [of money] for the so-called Polisario for fifty years,” he continued.
He urged Algiers and Rabat to transcend their divergences, arguing that the cultural, social, and historical ties binding the two countries are greater than their disagreement on the Sahara conflict.
In his interview, the politician also emphasized that the question of the Sahara “must come to an end.”
Algeria and Morocco have had cold diplomatic relations for decades. In addition to Algeria’s constant Morocco-bashing on the Western Sahara question, borders between the two countries have been closed since 1994.
Algeria closed the border with Morocco after Rabat imposed visa regulations on Algerian citizens. Morocco’s decision followed a terror attack on the Atlas Asni hotel in Marrakech.
Despite Morocco’s efforts in recent years to restore relations with Algeria, successive Algerian regimes have dismissed Rabat’s dialogue offer and continued to cultivate hostility towards Morocco.