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French, Moroccan FMs meet to discuss bilateral ties, Western Sahara

PARIS, May 10 (KUNA) -- French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe, who is leaving office with the outgoing government Thursday, met late Wednesday with his Moroccan counterpart Saad Eddine Al-Othmani to discuss bilateral ties and also regional issues like the Western Sahara problem.
A statement here Thursday indicated that the two men stressed "the exceptional nature of relations, praising economic trade and extremely deep cultural and human ties between the two countries." France is the largest trading partner in Europe for Morocco and is also the leading foreign investor in that nation.
On the Western Sahara, France reiterated its support for a solution to this contentious issue "according to the terms of resolution 2044" voted in the Security Council.
France has supported a Moroccan proposal to grant extensive autonomy to the Western Sahara, where Polisario rebels have fought a decades-long war to try to gain independence. (end) jk.hb KUNA 101549 May 12NNNN