After months of deteriorating relations, Algeria this week severed diplomatic ties with long-time regional rival Morocco over what foreign minister Ramtane Lamamra called “hostile, unfriendly and malicious actions against our country.” Rabat said that though the decision was “expected,” the allegations are “absurd.”

Algeria’s move is in many ways a reaction to Morocco’s growing ambition and regional assertiveness. The US’ decision to recognize Moroccan sovereignty over the Western Sahara in exchange for Rabat’s recognition of Israel in late 2020 was a double-body blow for Algeria (MEES, 11 December 2020). And US President Joe Biden’s seeming acceptance of former President Donald Trump’s decision has further disappointed Algeria. (CONTINUED - 710 WORDS)