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Spanish King urges Morocco to build new bilateral relations

King Felipe VI of Spain (L) and King Mohammed VI of Morocco (R) attend the signing of bilateral agreements at the Agdal Royal Palace on February 13, 2019 in Rabat, Morocco [Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images]
King Felipe VI of Spain (L) and King Mohammed VI of Morocco (R) attend the signing of bilateral agreements at the Agdal Royal Palace on February 13, 2019 in Rabat, Morocco [Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images]

King Felipe VI of Spain has called on Morocco to "walk together" with Spain to "begin to materialize a new relationship" on the basis of "stronger and more solid pillars", Spanish El Espanol newspaper reported.

The paper said King Felipe VI commented on relations with Morocco during his speech at the Royal Palace in Madrid held Monday during a traditional reception for the accredited foreign ambassadors to Spain, as well as Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Foreign Minister José Manuel Albares.

In May of last year, Morocco recalled Karima Benyaich, its ambassador to Spain for consultation after news emerged of Spain's sheltering of the Polisario Front leader Brahim Ghali.

Senior Spanish officials' decision to allow Ghali to stay in a hospital in Spain angered Morocco, which described the decision as running against the spirit of partnership and cooperation between the two countries.

The diplomatic crisis between the two countries deteriorated further in May when at least 6,000 migrants have reached Spain's Ceuta enclave from neighbouring Morocco which angered Madrid.

At the time, Spanish officials said most of the migrants were from Morocco.

READ: Where are the Maghreb countries headed?

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