The Delegation for relations with the Maghreb countries and the Arab Maghreb Union (including Libya) was set up following the direct elections to the European Parliament in 1979. It is responsible for relations with the following states: Algeria, Mauritania, Morocco, Libya and Tunisia. Regular meetings with each of these countries have been taking place since the 1980s. Meetings with Mauritania began in 1998 and meetings with Libya have been held since 2002.
Meetings with delegations from the Arab Maghreb Union were held only in the early 1990s. Since the 6th meeting in 1994, however, there has been no further official contact.
Western Sahara no longer falls under the Delegation’s remit. An ad hoc Delegation for Western Sahara was set up under the chairmanship of Ioannis Kasoulides and visited, firstly, Algiers and Tindouf in September 2006 then Rabat and Laâyoune in January 2009 for purely humanitarian reasons. The Ad Hoc Delegation published a report containing a number of recommendations following this mission.