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The emergence of ISIS as a military force and existential threat to Iraq has once more turned the region into a global strategic playground for extremists.Since the emergence of ISIS as a regional threat, the United States has pushed for Morocco to join the military coalition against ISIS, while Algeria stayed out. Algeria's absence, perhaps to focus on its tasks in neighboring trouble spots, signals a realignment of regional forces: Morocco joins the anti-ISIS coalition and Algeria focuses its diplomacy efforts on Libya and Mali. Rabat is on the offensive given its role in the anti-ISIS coalition and the high number of Moroccan fighters in the ranks of ISIS – meanwhile Algeria is regaining influence in the Sahel.The Obama administration's endorsement of Algeria's focus on the conflict in Mali and Libya, and their gratitude for Algiers' support for the anti-ISIS coalition (short of military intervention), shows how Algeria is regaining regional clout and international praise. Likewise, once ISIS is contained or defeated, returning foreign fighters will continue posing risks to their country of origin if the issue is not addressed at an international level.
Disjointed Gulf-Maghreb cooperation
Morocco, Western Sahara issue back at AU
The U.N. shifts on the Western Sahara conflict
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