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Morocco's late King Hassan did more than try to build bridges between Israel and its Arab neighbors


Israel had good reason to remember King Hassan II of Morocco as "a friend and a statesman," and not just because of his tireless efforts to build bridges between the Jewish state and its Arab neighbors. Secret cooperation between the Moroccan and Israeli intelligence services began in 1961 under King Hassan's father, Mohammed V, who allowed Moroccan Jews to emigrate to Israel. The younger monarch broadened and institutionalized the contacts after Meir Amit, the then-head of the Mossad, Israel's CIA, clandestinely met Hassan in Marrakech in 1964. Undercover contacts continued, with only two brief interruptions, until Hassan's death last Friday.

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