Morocco responds to France’s decision to “reduce visas granted”

During a news conference, Bourita said that Morocco ” took note of the decision made by France, which is to tighten the conditions for the granting of travel visas to Moroccan citizens, which we consider unjustified ” , stressing that Rabat will ” follow up closely with the French authorities”, after Paris’s decision to tighten visa conditions for citizens of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia in response to the “refusal” of the three countries to issue the necessary consular permits to take back migrants from their citizens, as declared by the French government spokesman ‘’Gabriel Attal’’ on Tuesday.

Besides, the Moroccan Foreign Minister confirmed that the kingdom’s consular interests in France have granted only about 400 passes to people who were in an illegal situation in the last eight months.

On the top of that, the French government spokesman called the tightening of visa procedures for citizens of the three Maghreb countries “unprecedented but necessary as these countries do not accept the repatriation of nationals we do not want and cannot keep in France”.

Also, he stressed that the positions of the three countries “slow down the effectiveness” of deportations from French territory when decisions are issued in this regard.

So far, there has been no comment on the French decision from the Algerian and Tunisian sides.

This year, France granted 18,579 visas to Moroccan citizens out of 24,191 applications, which is significantly lower figure than in 2019, when it granted 346,000 visas out of 420,000 applications.

By Nouhaila El Bouhli

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