Contains selective news articles I select

Archive for the ‘Protests in Morocco’ Category

Mass protest in northeast Morocco after two die in coal mine


RABAT – Thousands of people protested in northeast Morocco on Monday against economic marginalization after two young men died while digging in an abandoned coal mine.

The deaths on Friday of the two brothers, aged 23 and 30, sparked a wave of anger in the city of Jerada, according to Moroccan media.

On Monday several thousand people gathered for a second day in a row to denounce harsh living conditions, Said Zeroual of the Moroccan Association of Human Rights said.

“The whole city is observing a general strike” in solidarity, he added.

The demonstrators have adopted the slogans of the Al-Hirak al-Shaabi movement that staged a string of protests this year in the neighboring Rif region.

Jerada, long dependent on mining, suffered a major blow in the late 1990s with the closure of a coal pit that employed 9,000 people.

Source: Middle East Online.



Police break up protest in northern Morocco


AL-HOCEIMA – Police have dispersed a protest in Morocco’s northern city of Al-Hoceima, a rights group said Thursday, months after a local fishmonger’s death in a garbage truck sparked unrest.

Security forces broke up the protest in the city center late Wednesday as the demonstrators did not have a permit to protest, Mohamed Bassiri of the Moroccan Association of Human Rights (AMDH) said.

Footage circulated on social media showed police chasing dozens of protesters from the city’s main square after asking them to end the sit-in with a megaphone.

It showed protesters on the ground who appeared to have been bruised, and other demonstrators being arrested. The protesters were later released, according to the AMDH.

Mouhcine Fikri, 31, was crushed to death on October 28 in a garbage truck as he tried to protest against the seizure and destruction of swordfish, which were not allowed to be caught at that time of year.

His death in the Rif — an ethnically Berber region long neglected and at the heart of a 2011 protest movement for reform — triggered protests nationwide.

Those protests have now stopped but activists in Al-Hoceima have continued to call for a thorough investigation, alongside broader demands for an end to widespread unemployment and corruption.

Source: Middle East Online.


Supporters protest jailing of Morocco journalist

September 27, 2013

Protesters seek release of Moroccan journalist jailed after report on al-Qaida video

RABAT, Morocco (AP) — Hundreds of people protested Thursday in support of a Moroccan journalist who was jailed after publishing a story about an al-Qaida video.

The prosecutor general announced this week that the journalist, Ali Anouzla, has been charged under Morocco’s anti-terrorism law with assisting and advocating terrorism.

The protesters in the capital, Rabat, alleged he has been jailed for his independent views and criticism of authorities.

Anouzla, editor of the Lakome website, published a story about and posted the video by al-Qaida’s north African affiliate.

The video, released earlier this month, was a rare attack on Morocco and accused the king of corruption.

Amnesty International said Anouzla’s jailing “sends the message that any discussion of terrorism … will be treated by the government of Morocco as a criminal offense.”

If found guilty, Anouzla faces a maximum sentence of six years in prison.

Morocco: Protests as 24 Sahrawis tried


Rabat – Rival protests were held on Friday outside a military tribunal in the Moroccan capital where 24 Sahrawis accused of killing members of the security forces in the Western Sahara in 2010 are being tried.

The politically charged trial, which is being attended by a number of independent foreign observers, has been repeatedly delayed, with the defendants held in custody for more than two years.

The authorities say 11 people died in the clashes, among them members of the security forces, which broke out as the army moved to dismantle the Gdim Izik camp where thousands of local Sahrawis were living in November 2010.

The Sahrawis arrested during the unrest are accused of violence against the security forces, of pre-meditated killing and of mutilating the victims’ bodies.

Some 100 people demonstrated outside the court in Rabat on Friday, among them families of the victims, pro-Saharwi activists and relatives of the accused, many of whom were allowed to attend the trial, an AFP journalist said.

Some relatives of the victims remained outside the tribunal, waving banners that read: “We know who the killers are, so where is justice?”

Ahead of the trial, observers and rights groups expressed concern over allegations the defendants were tortured in custody, about the case being tried by a military court, and about the possible death penalty facing the accused, if convicted.

At dawn on 8 November 2010, Moroccan security forces moved to dismantle the Western Sahara camp, near the territory’s main city of Laayoune, which thousands of Sahrawis had set up in protest over their living conditions.

The intervention sparked clashes that spread to nearby Laayoune, where businesses and public buildings were looted and torched.

The authorities said 11 were killed in the unrest, while the Algeria-based Polisario Front separatists said dozens of people lost their lives.

Morocco annexed the former Spanish colony in 1975, in a move never recognized by the international community.

The Polisario Front launched its struggle for independence even before the annexation, with the resulting war lasting until 1991 when the UN brokered a ceasefire, but a settlement of the conflict still remains elusive.


Source: News24.


Morocco protest rallies draw thousands


Moroccans rallied in Casablanca, Rabat, Marrakech and Tangier on Sunday (September 25th), following a call for demonstrations by the February 20 Movement, Yabiladi reported. The Casablanca protest, which demanded political reforms and anti-corruption measures, drew some 10,000 people. In Rabat, some 1,000 people demonstrated for the release of political prisoners, including young rapper Mouad Al-Haqed, who was arrested on September 10th.

Source: Magharebia.

Anti-regime protests resume in Morocco

Mon Sep 26, 2011

Thousands of Moroccans have once again taken to the streets to call for deep political changes despite recent reforms aimed at curbing powers of King Mohammed VI.

The demonstrations were held in the country’s biggest city of Casablanca as well as in Tangiers, Marrakesh and the capital city of Rabat on Sunday, AFP reported.

The demonstrations were organized by the February 20 movement, named after the date Moroccans, inspired by revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, first began their anti-government protests.

Protesters urged the government to fight corruption and called for “more social justice.

Demonstrators in Rabat also called for the release of a protester detained during rallies in Casablanca in June.

The king’s proposed reforms received people’s positive vote in a referendum on July 1. However, critics believe the changes do not go far enough.

The reforms include the transfer of some of the powers of the king to the prime minister and the parliament, but the king will remain the head of state and the military as well as the highest religious authority in the country.

The Moroccan government has announced that the country’s parliamentary elections will be held in November.

Source: PressTV.

February 20 Movement resumes Morocco protests


Morocco’s February 20 Movement, which spearheaded demonstrations across the kingdom, organized new protests on Sunday (September 18th), AP reported. At least 3,000 people marched in Casablanca and another 2,000 people demonstrated in Tangier to denounce government corruption.

Reforms proposed by King Mohammed VI were approved in the July 1st constitutional referendum, but protestors say the measures offer little change. Morocco’s parliamentary elections are slated for November 25th.

Source: Magharebia.

Tag Cloud