Israeli minister calls Morocco normalization deal ‘historic and joyous’

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Tel Aviv (Reuters) – Israeli cabinet minister Rafi Peretz described Thursday’s announcement of a US-brokered normalization deal with Morocco as “historic and joyous”, in a first response from Israel.

“My parents, who immigrated from Morocco and left their entire lives behind, always spoke of peace and about good relations with the Arab neighbors in Morocco,” he tweeted.

Israel and Morocco agreed on Thursday to normalize relations in a deal brokered with the help of the United States, making Morocco the fourth Arab country to set aside hostilities with Israel in the past four months.

As part of the agreement, US President Donald Trump agreed to recognize Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara, where there has been a decades-old territorial dispute with Morocco pitted against the Algeria-backed Polisario Front, a breakaway movement that seeks to establish an independent state in the territory.