A special relationship

The Kingdom of Morocco and the United States of America are bound by a special and old alliance dating back to 1777 when Morocco became the first country to formally recognize the newly independent United States. In 1786, Morocco and the United States of America signed a Treaty of friendship that is still in force making it the longest-standing unbroken treaty in US history. This treaty formalized US-Moroccan relations and was signed by the Sultan of Morocco, Mohammed III, and John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both future U.S. Presidents were the signatories for the United States.

An old alliance united in the defense of common ideals

Morocco and the United States of America share a close and steadfast transatlantic relationship and have relentlessly allied their efforts to defend their shared values of freedom, democracy, tolerance and peace during both World Wars, the Cold War and in various coalitions such as the first Gulf war as well as in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism. With shared interests and common values, Morocco and the United States of America are also working together to promote regional security, create economic opportunities prosperity and address pressing global challenges in the Middle East and Africa.

A strategic partnership

Over the past seven decades, U.S.-Moroccan relations have been considerably strengthened marked by a large number of visits between high officials of the two countries (See Timeline of US-Morocco relations).

Under the leadership of King Mohammed VI and the last four US Administrations, the US-Morocco relationship has advanced on political, economic, social, and security fronts, highlighted namely by a joint commitment to combating terrorism, the designation of Morocco as a non-NATO Ally, the signing of the 2004 Free Trade Agreement and the establishment of two Compacts with the Millennium Challenge Corporation.

In recognition of this strong alliance, Morocco and the United States of America launched on September 13, 2012 a Strategic Dialogue—one of about two-dozen such agreements in existence.

1777 – Morocco was the first country to formally recognize the United States.

1783 – The United States negotiated its first formal treaty of commerce and friendship with Morocco. Negotiations began in 1783, and resulted in the signing in 1786 of the Moroccan-American Treaty of Friendship. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both future US Presidents, were the American signatories.

1836 – The Treaty of Friendship and Peace was renewed for an indefinite term.

World War I – During World War I, Morocco, under the French protectorate, was aligned with the Allied forces, and over 20,000 Moroccan soldiers fought in various theatres.

World War II – During World War II, Moroccan national defense forces aided American and British forces operating in the area. Morocco also hosted one of the most pivotal meetings of the allied leaders in World War II. President Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Free French commander General Charles De Gaulle met for four days in the Casablanca suburb of Anfa in January 1943 to discuss the war and agreed to launch their continental counter-push against Axis aggression through a beachhead landing on the French Atlantic coast. At this meeting President Roosevelt also pledged to do all in his power to support Morocco's wish to be independent of the French.

1956 – Following Morocco’s independence, President Eisenhower communicated to King Mohammed V that “my government renews its wishes for the peace and prosperity of Morocco,” to which the King responded that he would be a staunch ally in the fight against the proliferation of Communism in the region. Later that year, the two countries exchanged Ambassadors, thus establishing full diplomatic relations.

1957 – The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and its predecessor agencies have managed an active and effective assistance program in Morocco.

1963 – The Peace Corps has also been active in Morocco since 1963, and more than 4,860 volunteers have served there. Currently, there are over 180 volunteers in Morocco working in the areas of health, youth development, small business, and the environment.

1990s – African Lion, a joint military exercise conducted by US Army personnel in cooperation with Moroccan Armed Forces, began as a biennial event under the US European Command.

1995 – Morocco joined the NATO Mediterranean Dialogue, an initiative to promote regional security and stability in coordination with key NATO allies around the Mediterranean.

2001 – Following the September 11, 2001 attacks, Morocco renewed its commitment as a strong ally of the US. As the Department of State noted, “Morocco was among the first Arab and Islamic states to denounce the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States and declare solidarity with the American people in the war against terror.”