Morocco recalls Ambassador from Nigeria over phone row with President Jonathan
Morocco has decided the immediate recall of its ambassador in Abuja for consultation, the Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday.
“Contrary to the allegations made by Nigerian authorities to the ambassador of HM the King in Abuja and local media, the Kingdom of Morocco confirms, in the clearest and strongest terms, that there has never been a phone conversation between HM King Mohammed VI and the President of this country”, the ministry said in a statement.The Ministry of Foreign Affairs had released a statement on Sunday, denying reports that President Jonathan had been snubbed by King Mohammed IV.
“HM the King has actually declined the request of the Nigerian government because it is part of the internal electioneering and this country’s fundamentally hostile positions with regard to the territorial integrity of the Kingdom,” the statement said.
“The Kingdom of Morocco expresses its astonishment and denunciation to these unethical practices that are contrary to the spirit of responsibility that must prevail in relations between States”, the ministry added.
“Accordingly, the Kingdom of Morocco has decided the immediate recall of the ambassador of HM the King in Abuja for consultation”, the statement concluded.
“This information is absolutely not correct as the president did in fact speak to the Moroccan monarch… both leaders spoke extensively over the phone on matters of mutual interest and concern,” the Ministry said in a statement on behalf of the Federal Government.The statement said that since the King was away to France and not in Morocco, that both leaders spoke extensively over the phone on matters of mutual interest and concern which have nothing to do with the conduct of the re-scheduled elections in Nigeria.
“It is therefore preposterous to suggest that Mr. President telephone call to the Moroccan Monarch was intended to confer any electoral advantage on the President”, the Ministry added.