Morocco Military

Morocco is a country located in Northwest Africa, bordering the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. It has a population of around 35 million people and the official language is Arabic. The majority of the population are Muslims, with some other religious denominations also present.

The military of Morocco consists of three branches; Army, Navy and Air Force. The total active personnel in the military are around 195,000 people. The Army has around 130,000 personnel with a focus on ground operations and border protection. It also has a Navy with 25,000 personnel for maritime operations as well as 40 combat aircraft for air support operations. The Air Force has 40,000 personnel for air defense missions within Morocco’s borders.

Morocco is not a member of any international military or defense organization but does maintain close ties with other countries in the region such as Algeria and Tunisia. See naturegnosis to learn more about the country of Morocco.


The defense of Morocco, which is based on selective military duty with an initial service of 18 months, comprises (2008) 195,000 men with 150,000 men in reserve. To see related acronyms about this country, please check ABBREVIATIONFINDER where you can see that MAR stands for Morocco. It is organized in an army of 175,000 men with 6 brigades, 8 regiments and 50 independent battalions, as well as a Royal Guard, etc. 3 frigates, 27 patrol vessels and 4 landing craft and 2 naval infantry battalions. The Air Force comprises 13,000 men with 90 fighter aircraft and 20 armed helicopters. Semi-military security forces amount to 50,000 men, including a brigade. The material is of Western origin and modern.

Morocco Army

Defense costs decreased in 1985-2006 from 5.4% to 3.8% of GDP. Cease-fire prevails with the opposition movement Polisario, established in 1973, which disposes of between 3,000 and 6,000 men equipped with older Soviet equipment. Three other minor Islamic resistance movements are active. UN peacekeeping military forces (MIURSO) on the border with Western Sahara amount to approximately 200 men from some 25 countries, including Russian Federation, China and France.

Morocco participates in UN peacekeeping operations in Ivory Coast (UNOCI), Congo (Kinshasa) (MUNOC) and Serbia (KFOR).

Morocco is obliged to provide 12 months of initial service. The total force for Morocco’s armed forces is 195,800 active personnel, with a reserve of 150,000 personnel (2018, IISS). In addition, some 50,000 semi-military, 20,000 of whom are in the royal gendarmerie.

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The army has a staff of 175,000 active personnel, including 100,000 conscripts. Material comprised 602 tanks (222 Abrams, 340 M60 and 40 T-72), 116 light tanks (111 K├╝rassier, and five AMX-13), 284 reconnaissance vehicles, 115 armored vehicles, 1,225 armored personnel carriers, 160 armored fighters and 417 self-propelled artillery (of which 60 self-propelled air defense artillery). In addition, heavy artillery, short-range anti-aircraft missiles, light anti-aircraft artillery, and medium- duty drones.

Air Force

The Air Force has a workforce of 13,000 active personnel. Material comprising 22 fighters of a F-5 Tiger II, 49 fighter aircraft (23 F-16 and 26 Mirage F1), one ELINT aircraft, two tanker, 47 transport, 80 trainers (including 19 Alpha Jet can also be used as attack aircraft), and 96 helicopters.

The Navy

The Navy has a workforce of 7800 active personnel, including 1,500 Marines. The fleet includes a fighter, five frigates, 50 patrol vessels, five landings, and nine logistics and auxiliary vessels. In addition, the Navy has three helicopters.

International operations

In 2018, Morocco participated in UN operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) with 527 personnel, two observers and one field hospital, and in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) with 765 personnel and two observers.