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Turning to Rabat: Explaining the Elevation of Moroccan Relations with Caribbean Countries


Diplomatic relations between Caribbean and African countries are a driving force behind their respective contributions to the conduct of international politics, as the past decade-plus of little-known Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS)-Moroccan relations attests. An analysis of the latter sheds new light on two, interlinked sets of dynamics. First, there is an interplay between those enhanced relations and OECS members’ status-seeking behaviour – through recognition as pro-Rabat, Western Sahara agenda influencers – in a hierarchical system of sovereign states. Second, having regard to the subsequent benefits, the OECS bloc is taking a hard-nosed approach to aligning itself with and diplomatically backing Rabat, which could conflict with some long-established foreign policy tenets of these states.
Keywords: OECS-Moroccan relations; Western Sahara; small states; status-seeking; foreign policy-based transactionalism