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Cablegate: Ambassador, Interior Minister Discuss Cooperation

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHRB #0068 0331039
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 021039Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY RABAT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1109
INFO RUCNMGH/MAGHREB COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS RABAT 000068

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

DEPT FOR INL/AAE AND NEA/MAG

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PTER SNAR KJUS MO
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR, INTERIOR MINISTER DISCUSS COOPERATION

REF: RABAT 0026

1. (U) Summary: Meeting for the first time on January 20,
the Ambassador and newly appointed Moroccan Minister of
Interior Taieb Cherkaoui (reftel) discussed a broad range of
issues. Cherkaoui called relations with the United States
"excellent," and he expressed gratitude for the long, rich
partnership between the two countries. The Ambassador noted
that Morocco has shown clear leadership in various areas and
is a model of security cooperation in the region. He added
that the United States stands ready and willing to share its
experience with judicial reform in constructive ways. End
Summary.

-----------------------
Cooperation and Support
-----------------------

2. (SBU) The Ambassador met newly appointed Moroccan
Minister of Interior Taieb Cherkaoui on January 20 for an
introductory discussion. MOI Director of Internal Affairs
Mohammed Tricha, MOI Director of Foreign Relations and Crisis
Management Khalid Zerouali, RSO, D/PolCouns, and LES
Political Assistant attended as well.

3. (SBU) Cherkaoui called U.S.-Morocco relations
"excellent," citing economic cooperation, in particular the
Free Trade Agreement, and engagement on security matters,
including counterterrorism and the fight against organized
crime. He said that U.S. assistance has been instrumental in
helping the GOM reduce trafficking in persons and illegal
immigration, and has played an important role in the fight
against drugs. He thanked the United States for
counterterrorism assistance, welcoming ongoing collaboration
in fighting extremism and expressing the wish that U.S.
support bolster Morocco's role in the region.

4. (SBU) Cherkaoui described efforts to advance human rights
through legislation and by reinforcing the rule of law for
all citizens. He called the MOI a U.S. partner in human
rights, citing the annual Human Rights Dialogue and
expressing readiness to clarify concerns and continue
cooperation in this field.

---------------
Judicial Reform
---------------

5. (SBU) The Ambassador thanked Cherkaoui for his comments,
adding that the United States stands ready to work with the
GOM in its efforts. He expressed U.S. willingness to assist
in judicial reform efforts and to share its experience in
constructive ways. Cherkaoui remarked that King Mohammed VI
has launched a series of political, human rights and human
development reforms, all of which need the support of a
powerful, independent judiciary. A former judge, Cherkaoui
stressed that the judiciary occupies a crucially important
place in society. He stated that most of the judicial reform
vision has been implemented and is achieving its goals.
Final results will soon be evident, he said.


*****************************************
Visit Embassy Rabat's Classified Website;
http://www.intelink.sgov.gov/wiki/Portal:Moro cco
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KAPLAN

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