Morocco-U.S. Strategic Alliance Celebrated in Washington

2 May 2024
Morocco-U.S. Strategic Alliance Celebrated in Washington

The strategic alliance and multidimensional partnership between Morocco and the United States were celebrated Wednesday in Washington D.C. on the occasion of the naming of the Tangier American Legation on the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s annual list of America’s eleven most endangered historic sites.

The Tangier Legation is a “powerful” symbol of American diplomacy and of our nation’s longstanding ties with Morocco, said Deputy Secretary of State Richard R. Verma at a ceremony held on this occasion at the State Department’s headquarters.

“But the Legation needs help, and this listing will bring needed attention and resources, ensuring it continues to thrive as an active center celebrating the friendship between our countries,” he pointed out.

For his part, Morocco’s ambassador to the United States, Youssef Amrani, underlined the Kingdom’s commitment to preserving this iconic site “which stands as a testament of the unique, deep, and historic relationship that links our two countries.”

“To this day, we continue to share America’s longest unbroken treaty of friendship and our alliance has only grown stronger with time, thanks to the leadership and constant commitment for a strategic partnership expressed at the highest level, by His Majesty King Mohammed VI,” the diplomat stressed.

The Legation represents “the shared values of openness, mutual coexistence and dialogue that our countries have in common,” said M. Amrani, adding that it also represents an institution “that not only reflects the depth of our rich history, but also continues to contribute actively to the dynamic cultural scene in Tangier’s old medina.”

The ambassador said he was confident that the American Legation will continue to play a vibrant role as an American cultural center in Morocco and as a symbol of the enduring friendship between the two countries. “A relationship where people-to-people ties are our biggest asset and can be an engine for growth.”

“The Tangier American Legation, operated by Tangier American Legation Institute for Moroccan Studies (TALIM), is now an important cultural center, museum, and research library for the surrounding community and visitors,” underlined Carol Quillen, President and CEO of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

“The building itself also represents centuries of long-standing friendship between the United States and Morocco,” she added.

Andrea Cochrane Tracey, Director of the Fund to Conserve United States Diplomatic Treasures Abroad, announced, for her part, a new phase in the Fund’s campaign to raise $10 million in private funds to restore and preserve the Legation.

In his turn, William H. Moser, Director of the Bureau of Overseas Building Operations at the U.S. Department of State, underlined, in a video message, the importance of mobilizing the resources needed for the restoration and the preservation of the Legation.

The U.S. ambassador to Morocco, Puneet Talwar, highlighted, in a similar message, the strong multidimensional partnership between his country and the Kingdom, noting that Morocco is the only African country that has a free trade agreement with the United States.

This ceremony, which was attended by several officials from the U.S. State Department, was an opportunity to highlight the role played by the Tangier American Legation and underline the strength of relations between Rabat and Washington.

In 1821, Moroccan Sultan Moulay Suliman presented to the United States a mud and stone building in Tangier as a token of abiding friendship, making it the first American-owned public property abroad.

The five-story, 45-room American Legation complex, located in the old Medina of Tangier, has served as a U.S. embassy, a consulate, and the official residence of U.S. ambassadors to the Kingdom of Morocco. It also played a key role in the U.S. and Morocco’s history.

Source: map

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