US Official: Morocco, a Critical Partner in Countering Terrorism

US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East, Dana Stroul, considers Morocco a “critical partner” in countering terrorism.

“Morocco is a critical partner, one that shares US interests and objectives in countering violent extremism and addressing not only in the Sahel but across Africa the conditions that give rise to Daesh’s expansion,” stated the American official during a special online briefing on the ongoing D-ISIS mission.

Stroul added that “these are areas that we maintain focus on and we partner not only with our partners but with the State Department and others to address it on a daily basis.”

In a similar context, the US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East affirmed that “there is also active consideration and planning with our partners in the Sahel for how we work together to address Daesh in the Sahel,” adding that those are constant areas of “communication and work that the US, again, seeks to achieve and maintain focus on by working with its critical allies and partners.”

For his part, Commander of Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve, US Army Major General Matthew McFarlane, said that since the beginning of this year in Iraq, between January 1 and the first week of April, there has been a 68% decrease in attacks carried out by Daesh compared to the same period last year. General McFarlane also reported a 55% decrease in Syria during the same period.

“This past Ramadan has been one of the most peaceful in years thanks to the combined efforts of our partners,” stated the American military official.

In its latest report on terrorism, the US State Department stressed that Morocco and the US share a “long history of strong counter-terrorism cooperation.”

The report also noted that the Moroccan government is implementing its comprehensive strategy in this area, which includes “vigilant security measures, regional and international cooperation, and counter-radicalization policies.

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