President Moktar Ould Daddah of Mauritania continued his world-wide diplomatic offensive in support of his country's claim to phosphate-rich Spanish Sahara -- in the face of a rival claim by Morocco -- with a personal visit to Morocco on Friday (9 August).
GV Aircraft taxiing in
SV Mauritanian and Moroccan flags
SV Ould Daddah out of aircraft and greeted by Premier Osman and others
SV Guard of honour
SV Ould Daddah inspects guard
GV & CU Royal Palace and guard (2 shots)
SV Ould Daddah and party arrive at palace
SV King Hassan greets Ould Daddah in verandah corridor
LV & CU INTERIOR King and Ould Daddah seated with others (4 shots)
Initials BB/2236 WLW/MR/BB/0007
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Background: President Moktar Ould Daddah of Mauritania continued his world-wide diplomatic offensive in support of his country's claim to phosphate-rich Spanish Sahara -- in the face of a rival claim by Morocco -- with a personal visit to Morocco on Friday (9 August). He and King Hassan discussed the question of the decolonisation of Spanish Sahara at length during the Mauritanian President's 24-hour visit, according to a joint communique. The communique did not specifically mention the two nations' rival claims to Spanish Sahara once Spain had relinquished control -- which it has agreed to in principle.
Morocco and Mauritania share borders with each other and the Spanish Sahara. Mauritania, which was a French colony until its independence under the rule of President Ould Daddah in 1960, was claimed as sovereign territory by Morocco until 1969, when the claims were finally dropped. Since then Mauritania has grown close to the Arab world, becoming an associate member of the Arab League last year.
The two nations' leaders have recently been pressing their claims to the Spanish Sahara with the despatching of envoys all over the world to seek support from other nations. Spain, while it has agreed to Spanish Saharan self-determination without setting a formal date, has increased its forces in the territory and the nearby Canary Islands to meet alleged threats by Morocco to 'liberate' it forcefully.