update deskMiddle East

Knesset speaker to visit Moroccan Parliament

"The dream of peace with the lands of Islam has always been in our hearts," Amir Ohana said.

Knesset Speaker Amir Ohana (center) celebrates Mimouna at the Knesset Plaza in Jerusalem, April 12, 2023. Credit: Knesset.
Knesset Speaker Amir Ohana (center) celebrates Mimouna at the Knesset Plaza in Jerusalem, April 12, 2023. Credit: Knesset.

Knesset ​Speaker Amir Ohana will fly to Rabat on Wednesday on an official visit to the Parliament of Morocco.

Ohana of the ruling Likud Party is the first Knesset speaker ever invited to a state visit to the parliament of a Muslim country, the Knesset announced on Monday.

Ohana, whose parents were born in Morocco and made aliyah in the 1950s, was invited to Rabat by his counterpart, the president of the House of Representatives of Morocco, Rachid Talbi el-Alami.
 
Ohana is scheduled to meet with el-Alami; MP Nor-Edin Elhrouchi, the chair of the Morocco-Israel Parliamentary Friendship Group; and additional members of the House of Representatives.

The speaker and his host are expected to sign a Memorandum of Understanding for the development of inter-parliamentary cooperation to strengthen the relationship between the State of Israel and the Kingdom of Morocco.
 
He is also slated to meet with senior officials from the government of Morocco and with leaders of the Jewish community.
 
“Thanks to the groundbreaking leadership of King Mohammed VI of Morocco, this visit has been made possible,” Ohana said in a written statement.

“The dream of peace with the lands of Islam has always been in our hearts, and it is only fitting that of all these many countries, it is the Kingdom of Morocco that is the first to invite one of the symbols of government and head of the State of Israel’s legislative branch—who also happens to be the first Knesset Speaker of Moroccan origin—for an official visit to its House of Representatives,” he said.

“History is being made before our eyes, and it heralds the strengthening of the relationship between the two countries, greater closeness between the nations and expanding the circle of peace,” Ohana added.

Israel and Morocco normalized relations in December 2020 as part of the US-brokered Abraham Accords.

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