AFRICOM commander hails Morocco as key US-military ally

The new head of the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) Thursday lauded Morocco’s contribution in the fight against terrorism in the Sahel region, describing the kingdom is a “key” US-military-ally.


General Stephen J. Towensend led an important military delegation to Morocco as he wound up a tour of the continent.

He met in capital Rabat with Moroccan Minister Delegate for National Defense Administration Abdellatif Loudiyi and Inspector General of Moroccan Armed Forces (FAR), Abdelfattah Louarak.

Towensend and his Moroccan interlocutors discussed ways to boost military cooperation.

Morocco and the US enjoy friendly relations and a regular, rich and diversified military cooperation that covers training, exchange of expertise, logistical support, and the organization of joint exercises, the FAR said in a statement.

Towensend told local online media Le360 that Morocco represents a “key” military ally for the US. He also underlined the kingdom’s role in counterterrorism operations in the Sahel region where terror groups constitute a threat to West African countries.

He said the 2020 edition of the “African Lion” military exercise will involve 3,000 troops from 20 countries.

Before coming to Rabat, Gen. Townsend was in Tunis where he met Tunisian officials as well as Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj.

Topics of discussion with Sarraj included the security environment, the importance of addressing the existing violent extremist organization threat, and the need to resolve the conflict in Libya, AFRICOM said in a press release.

“We emphasized to Prime Minister Sarraj the importance of supporting a diplomatic solution to put an end to the current conflict,” said Townsend.

Written by