Morocco will reopen consulates in Libya's Tripoli and Benghazi: foreign ministry

Morocco will reopen consulates in Libya's Tripoli and Benghazi: foreign ministry
Morocco announced it would reopen two of its missions in war-torn Libya after nine years of closure.
2 min read
20 June, 2023
The Moroccan embassy in Tripoli, Libya, was the target of a bombing claimed by IS in April 2015 [Getty]

Morocco announced on Monday it was reopening its consulates in the Libyan cities of Tripoli and Benghazi after nine years of closure.

The decision came as part of a raft of new diplomatic appointments, with 23 new consul generals selected for a number of cities around the world including the Libyan capital Tripoli and the eastern city of Benghazi, the Moroccan foreign ministry said in a statement.

More than 60,000 Moroccans in Libya have reportedly faced difficulties in renewing their passports, identity cards and finalising other documents since Rabat closed its consulates in war-torn Libya in 2014.

A crisis cell on the Libyan-Tunisian border which used to serve Moroccan nationals in Libya was shut in 2019.

It is not clear whether the reopening of the two consulates will be followed by steps to reopen the Moroccan embassy in Tripoli, where activity has been suspended since an April 2015 bomb attack claimed by the Islamic State group.

The attack caused damage to the embassy but no casualties, and came shortly after the South Korean mission in Tripoli was also targeted. 

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Moroccan Foreign Affairs Minister Nasser Bourita had previously tied the embassy’s reopening to security and stability returning to Libya, which has suffered years of conflict.

Libya has been torn by stop-start conflict since a popular uprising toppled dictator Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, with a myriad of militias forming opposing alliances backed by foreign powers.

The country remains split between a nominally interim government in Tripoli in the west, and another in the east backed by military strongman Khalifa Haftar.