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Morocco: Thousands of protesters demand release of activists

Morocco: Thousands of protesters demand release of activists

In Morocco, the march of the Moroccan people’s aim was releasing the activists from the“Rif Movement”, BBC reported. On Sunday, thousands of protesters demanded justice from the government.

Sunday’s “march of the Moroccan people” was organised by political and civil rights groups, as well as the families of detainees. The demonstrators held the flags, banners and pictures of 42 jailed members of Hirak Rif, or the “Rif Movement”. Dozens of its activists had rallied against corruption and unemployment, and the police have jailed them.

Sunday’s march of the Moroccan people comes weeks after a court upheld prison sentences for the activists, who held protests in 2016 and 2017. According to the authorities, the Rif Movement’s members are threatening the security of the country.

The protesters have insisted on the release of journalist Hamid El Mahdaoui, who is serving a three-year sentence for covering the protests in Morocco’s northern Rif region.

Morrocan government has zero tolerance to any separatism moves in the country. Last summer, a court sentenced the Rif Movement’s leader Nasser Zefzaki to 20 years in prison. The similar measure was taken in regards to other activists – Ouassim El Boustati and Samir Ghid. They will spend 15 years in jail, the court’s verdict read.

The Hirak Rif organised protests in 2016 and 2017 after the death of a fishmonger in Al-Hoceima, a town in Rif. Fishmonger Mohcine Fikri was crushed to death by a rubbish lorry whilst trying to recover his fish which had been confiscated by local police. The incident prompted a wave of anger and thousands took to the streets, accusing authorities of corruption and abuse of power.