Morocco - Country history and economic development

1904. France and Spain conclude a secret agreement that divides Morocco into zones of French and Spanish influence, with France controlling almost all of Morocco and Spain controlling the small southwestern portion, which became known as Spanish Sahara.

1906. Algeciras Conference takes place. The sultan of Morocco maintains control of his lands, and France's privileges are curtailed.

1912. The sultan of Morocco, Moulay Abd al-Hafid, permits French protectorate status.

1953. Sultan Mohammed V is deposed by the French and replaced by his uncle.

1955. Sultan Mohammed V returns to power as a result of popular pressure.

1956. France and Spain recognize Morocco's independence.

1961. Sultan Mohammed's son, Hassan II, ascends to the throne.

1976. Spain withdraws from Western Sahara.

1979. Mauritania withdraws from the rest of the Western Sahara. The rebellious Polisario Front wages a war for independence and clashes with Moroccan police.

1981. King Hassan agrees to a ceasefire in Western Sahara.

1992. Government launches economic reform program.

1996. Association Accord is signed with the European Union.

1997. Parliamentary elections take place.

1998. King Hassan appoints a new leftist government headed by Prime Minister Abderrahmane Youssoufi.

1999. King Hassan II dies; his son, Prince Sidi Mohammed is crowned King Mohammed VI.

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