2020: Active, Diversified and Leading Presence of Morocco in UN and International Fora

2020: Active, Diversified and Leading Presence of Morocco in UN and International Fora


The year 2020 has been marked by an active, diversified and leading presence of Morocco at the level of various structures and governing bodies of major UN and international organizations, conferences and other fora.

In the wake of its commitment to multilateralism for general disarmament and non-proliferation, Morocco has positioned itself during the year 2020 after its appointment to several international bodies.

Thus, the Kingdom has been entrusted with the presidency of the 64th General Conference (21-25 September 2020) of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) - a position sought for the first time by Morocco- in the person of Ambassador Azzeddine Farhane, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom to international organizations in Vienna.

He was also appointed Chairman of the Executive Council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) for a one-year term (May 12, 2020, to May 11, 2022). This designation was validated by the African Group of States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), and Vice-Chairman, on behalf of the African Group of States Parties to the CWC, of the Executive Council of the OPCW.

Similarly, and in recognition of the effectiveness of Morocco's strategy to combat terrorism and its leading role in the global fight against this scourge and other phenomena of transnational organized crime, the Kingdom has been appointed Vice-President of the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force (MENAFATF), in charge of developing international standards in the fight against money laundering and terrorism financing.

Morocco was also entrusted with co-chairing with Canada the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum (GCTF), a mandate that Morocco has held since 2016 and which has been extended for an additional year until September 2022.

The Kingdom is also chairing the 10th session of the Working Group on Trafficking in Persons, held in September 2020 in Vienna. The Group was established by the Conference of States Parties to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime to review the implementation of the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children.

As a member of the United Nations Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) for the period 2021-2023, the Kingdom was also reappointed for a new term in elections held on December 10, 2020, during a meeting of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

Recognized for its unwavering commitment to the international community's efforts to curb transnational crime, Morocco will continue to sit in the CCPCJ, the principal organ of the United Nations whose mandates cover a wide range of issues, such as human trafficking, transnational organized crime, terrorism prevention or cybercrime.

As part of its policy for multidimensional influence and active visibility in the commissions, committees and other deliberative bodies of the United Nations and its specialized agencies, the Kingdom has managed, during the year 2020, to ensure its presence in various structures in New York and other multilateral capitals.

This is notably the case of the Ambassador Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Omar Hilale, who was elected for an additional year as Vice-President of the Executive Board of UNICEF for the cycle 2021; and it is in his person that Morocco was chosen to represent Africa in the High-Level Consultative Committee for the UN Food Summit to be held in 2021.

Morocco was elected as a member of the Executive Board of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), following its nomination by the African Regional Group at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome.

During his three-year term (2021-2023), the Kingdom will, thus, have to contribute to the activities of one of the largest humanitarian and food aid agencies in the world.

Morocco was elected member of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), for the period 2020-2024 and was reappointed for another four-year term (2021-2024) as a member of the Council of the International Seabed Authority (ISA).

Besides, Mustapha El Baaj was reappointed as Judge of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. The judicial body was established by the Security Council to carry out a number of the core functions of these two Tribunals after the end of their mandates. El Baaj was reappointed for another four-year term (2021-2024) as a member of the ISA Board.

El Hassane Zahid was re-elected for a new four-year term as a member of the United Nations International Civil Service Commission, a position he has held since 1997.

Ismahane Elouafi was appointed in September 2020 as Chief Scientist at the FAO. This position was newly created to further strengthen the technical and scientific dimension of the work of the organization. This appointment is a recognition of the great skills of this Moroccan scientist and her deep experience in research in agricultural sciences.

Morocco has joined, for a four-year term, the Governing Board of the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, based in Hamburg, Germany, and will be represented on this Board by Morocco's Ambassador to Germany, Zohour Alaoui.

To these examples of successful Moroccan candidacies at the level of international and regional organizations during the year 2020, is added the election of Morocco, on March 3, 2020, to the Vice Presidency of the International School Sports Federation, in the person of Youssef Belqasmi, Secretary-General of the Department of National Education.

Morocco was also elected as President of the African Volleyball Confederation, in the person of Bouchra Hajij, President of the Royal Moroccan Volleyball Federation.

With her election on October 25, 2020, Hajij is thus the first woman to run for the presidency of an African sports body, the ministry said, describing it as a new sign of recognition of the Kingdom's pioneering role in Africa, and a tribute to Moroccan skills, Moroccan women and national sport.

Ambassador Ahmed Rachid Khattabi was appointed Deputy Secretary-General of the League of Arab States during the 154th session of the Ministerial Council of the Organization, held on September 9, 2020.