Algeria threatens Spain by shutting off the gas tap. The African country has learned that the Spanish government, led by Pedro Sánchez, has reached an agreement with Morocco to help regasify liquefied gas and then send it back to Rabat via the disused Maghreb Europe gas pipeline connecting Algeria to Morocco via Spain and Andalusia.
Algeria suspects the Spaniards are exporting the gas it buys to Morocco.
Relations between the two Maghreb countries are extremely strained because of Western Sahara. While Algiers supports the independence of the area, Rabat will not let go of its own plan for autonomy, the essence of which is that while in certain matters the Sahrawi could decide independently, the King of Morocco would decide on issues related to foreign affairs, defense and the legal system. Algeria is not selling gas to Morocco because of the conflict.
The Spanish government unexpectedly announced in March that it would adopt Rabat’s plans for Western Sahara after decades of independence. Foreign Minister José Manuel Albares said Morocco’s plans were serious, viable and capable of resolving a long-running dispute.
Algeria did not know about the Pauline turn, which he later angrily received. He repatriated his ambassador to Madrid and even raised the issue of reviewing the price of gas sold to Spaniards.
Madrid had the undisguised intention of easing the diplomatic conflict with Rabat, which peaked last spring, by adopting an autonomy plan. Spain backed the independence of Western Sahara at the time, and bypassed Morocco, secretly providing medical care to Brahim Ghali, a leader of the Polisario Front, a movement for independence. Once this was revealed, Morocco retaliated by stopping the so-called strait crossing operation, which made it easier for millions of African citizens to travel between Europe and Morocco. Rabat then stopped border controls in Ceuta and more than ten thousand illegal immigrants broke into the Spanish autonomous city, whose repatriation has been difficult since then.
However, the Spanish government was forced to settle its relations with Morocco due to constant migratory pressure, so it undertook a clash with Algeria.
However, the situation has not become more peaceful. Algiers is now threatening Madrid in the same way as Rabat last year. After it was revealed that the Spaniards were helping Morocco get gas, Algeria said that if it turned out that his product would be delivered to Morocco, the gas contract with the Iberian country would be terminated due to a breach of duty.
The closure of the Algerian gas tap in the current situation, with the whole of Europe struggling to overcome its dependence on Russian gas, would be an extremely serious blow, especially to Spain, of which Algeria is already the main supplier of gas.
The Spanish government claims that it does not resell the energy it buys from them to Morocco. Rabat is said to have asked them for help to guarantee its energy security, but it is sourcing liquefied natural gas from the international market and Spain is only helping to regasify and transport it.
Cover image: Illustration (Photo: MTI / Zsolt Czeglédi)
Source: Magyar Nemzet by magyarnemzet.hu.
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