Italian “tourists” cause a stir with aid workers in Morocco | outside

A group of Italians who went to the disaster area in Morocco to help caused friction between Rabat and Rome, according to media. According to Italian and Moroccan media, the Italian government urgently asked the four to leave the country after complaints from Morocco.

Four members of the official Italian emergency aid group, “Raggruppamento Operativo Emergenze” (ROE), began helping in the affected area in the Atlas Mountains south of Marrakesh without consulting third parties. They did not discuss this matter with anyone because Morocco did not request assistance from Italy.

They traveled to Morocco as tourists. They immediately spoke to the media and spoke about what they described as incompetent and ineffective Moroccan assistance.

This would have caused great anger in Rabat, and the Italian government would have been held accountable. He approached the four, but they said they came in a personal capacity and not on behalf of the Italian state. This was not received well by the Moroccan authorities, who pointed out that they were traveling in the blue uniform of the rules of engagement.

According to the ROE website, the issue was exaggerated by the media and is not a diplomatic incident. President Giovanni Battista Cecchetti Marchegiani said that the mission of the base of engagement will continue as planned and will not be opposed by Moroccan authorities or relief institutions. He added that the four will return to Rome as planned in the coming days.

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Denton Watson

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