Morocco severs ties with Iran over support for West Sahara Polisario front-official

File photo showing Moroccan people protesting in support of Western Sahara. (AFP)
Updated 01 May 2018

Morocco severs ties with Iran over support for West Sahara Polisario front-official

RABAT: Morocco will sever ties with Iran over Tehran’s support for the Western Sahara independence Polisario front, the Moroccan foreign minister said on Tuesday.
Morocco will close its embassy in Tehran and will expel the Iranian ambassador in Rabat, Nasser Bourita told reporters. Al Arabiya News channel reported that Morocco is severing ties with Iran as the Lebanese militia Hezbollah have been training polisario militants. Morocco stated that Iran's Lebanese ally Hezbollah has been involved in the delivery of weapons from Iran to the Polisario Front, Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita said Tuesday.
He told reporters that "a first shipment of weapons was recently" sent to the Algerian-backed Polisario Front, which is seeking independence, via an "element" at the Iranian embassy in Algiers.Several countries have expressed solidarity with Morocco over breaking up its relation with Iran. Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Bahrain were quick to express their support to Rabat's move. A source at the Saudi Arabian foreign ministry said that Riyadh condemns all interference in Moroccan affairs, and supports the steps taken by Rabat against Iran. The Saudi Arabian source added that Hezbollah militia training of Polisario militants aims to destabilze Morrocco and threaten its security. 


 

 


Erdogan’s son-in-law leaves sovereign wealth fund

Updated 15 min 5 sec ago

Erdogan’s son-in-law leaves sovereign wealth fund

  • The 42-year-old quit as finance minister in a cryptic November 8 message on Instagram
  • His resignation was ignored by state media until it was formally accepted by Erdogan the next night

ANKARA: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s son-in-law quit as the deputy head of Turkey’s huge sovereign wealth fund, completing a fall from grace that began with his surprise resignation as finance minister.
Berat Albayrak had been viewed as Turkey’s second most powerful figure until his chaotic departure from the government at the start of the month.
Married to the Turkish leader’s elder daughter, the 42-year-old quit as finance minister in a cryptic November 8 message on Instagram that cited health reasons.
His resignation from the helm of the Turkish economy was ignored by state media for more than 24 hours, until it was formally accepted by Erdogan the next night.
Albayrak’s two-year tenure as economy chief saw the lira lose 40 percent of its value against the dollar and the central bank burn though most of its reserves in trying to defend the currency.
His departure was linked to Erdogan’s appointment of a new market-friendly central banker whom Albayrak had strongly opposed.
Naci Agbal, the new central bank governor, sharply raised the main interest rate at his first policy meeting last week, helping the lira halt its slide.
Yet Albayrak still held on to his post as deputy head of the sovereign wealth fund, which was created in 2016 and now manages state assets officially valued at $22.6 billion.
Erdogan’s office said little about Albayrak’s departure, noting in a one-sentence statement that he “left the board of the sovereign wealth fund of Turkey after asking to take leave.”
He was appointed as its deputy head in 2018, the same year Erdogan became its official chief.