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Morocco Military


Total Moroccan active armed strength in 2002 was 196,300 with reserves numbering 150,000. The army had 175,000 personnel, the navy 7,800, and the air force 13,500. Military hardware included 520 main battle tanks, 224 in store, and 100 light tanks; two frigates and 27 patrol and coastal combatant ships and boats; and 95 combat aircraft. Paramilitary forces totaled 50,000. The Polisario Front opposition forces were estimated between 3,000–6,000. Moroccan troops were stationed in three regions on peacekeeping missions. The 1999–00 budget called for defense expenditures of $1.4 billion or 4% of GDP.

The Moroccan army has two commands: one responsible for the northern zone, or Morocco proper, and the other for the southern zone, or Western Sahara. These commands control three mechanized infantry brigades, one light security brigade, two paratroop brigades, and eight mechanized or motorized infantry regiments. Independent units include one armored battalion, two cavalry battalions, 39 infantry battalions, one mountain infantry battalion, two paratroop battalions, three motorized (camel corps) battalions, nine artillery battalions, seven engineering battalions, one air defense group, and seven commando units. The 1,500-member Royal Guard has one battalion and one cavalry squadron. The navy, including a marine force, is deployed from five bases at Casablanca, Agadir, Al Hoceima, Dakhla, and Tangier. The air force has operational bases in Rabat-Salé, Meknès, Kenitra, and Sidi Slimane and a training base in Marrakech.


Military branches
Royal Armed Forces (Forces Armees Royales, FAR): Royal Moroccan Army (includes Air Defence), Navy (includes Marines), Royal Moroccan Air Force (Force Aerienne Royale Marocaine) (2007)

Military service age and obligation
18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; conscript service obligation - 18 months (2004)

Manpower available for military service
males age 18-49: 7,908,864
females age 18-49: 7,882,879 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service
males age 18-49: 6,484,787
females age 18-49: 6,675,729 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually
males age 18-49: 353,377
females age 18-49: 341,677 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP
5% (2003 est.)





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