A luteovirus isolate infecting chickpea in Morocco was experimentally transmitted by Myzus persicae to Physalis floridana, on which it produced mild symptoms. When tested in western blots against antisera to known legume luteoviruses, this isolate reacted strongly to beet western yellows virus (BWYV) antiserum, moderately to bean leafroll virus antiserum, while no reaction was recorded with the antiserum against subterranean clover red leaf virus. In PCR, a fragment of ca. 950 bp was amplified, comprising the 3' end of the open reading frame (ORF) 3, the complete coat protein gene (ORF 4), and the non-translated region in between these ORFs. The nucleotide sequence of the amplified fragment showed high similarity with BWYV (approximately 96%), and lower (50–60%) with other luteoviruses reported to infect legumes. On the basis of these data, the Moroccan isolate was identified as BWYV. This is the first molecular evidence for the occurrence of BWYV on chickpea in Morocco, and on food legumes in general in North Africa.