Blog Archives

MOROCCO: An Epiphany in Imider: the true history, how it began, how it has been ignored

22.11.2014  by By Abdellatif Talibi

940859_650158655001201_939816504_nImider is located between Tinghir and Boumalne Dades in the south-east of Morocco. It’s a small village with rustic charm. Those who dwell there are marked by their simplicity and hospitality. “Tamazgha” is the word for land inhabited by residents who speak Tamazight, commonly known in the west as “Berber.” It is a dry, remote region in the mountains, still maintaining traditional religious values and not yet tarnished by massive globalization. What is more striking is that if you read about the popular understanding of Imider, one is surprised to find out that people know the area as one of the most famous silver mines in North Africa and the 7th largest in the world. Major profits are generated by it on a daily basis. However, a certain irony lies in the fact that these same people were ignored, despite the life that they had been living there long before the mine — human beings who suffer daily because of that mine. The great majority ignores both the mine and residents primarily because the owners are reluctant to make the the commercial affair a widely-known fact. They want it remain under cover permanently, and for that very reason, have kept the media from discovering the facts. It’s been nearly three years of discomfort and struggles that the Imidri people have endured through their peaceful sit-in. They are condemned to all forms of humiliation in their ‘occupied land.’ They are, roughly speaking, subject to acts of ‘looting’ and dramatic disruptions in their daily lives. All these impositions can be attributed to human cupidity to possess. It is, simply speaking, pure greed.

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MOROCCO: Racist Attacks in Boukhalef

tanger-10_2014-08-29The violence in Boukhalef, a quarter of Tangier in the North of Morocco, has reached a new dimension. Friday night, the 29th of August, a racist group armed with knives and bats attacked migrants and killed at least one person – a Senegalese – by cutting his throat with a knife, several others were badly injured and were brought to a hospital. Some of them are still in critical conditions. People talk about up to 3 more deaths which is not yet confirmed. Read the rest of this entry

MOROCCO: You can arrest us but you can’t silence us: politically motivated arrests and detention in Morocco

By Leila Al Shami

6 June 2014, Sit in calling for the release of political prisoners in Casablanca. Photo Via: @LeJebly

6 June 2014, Sit in calling for the release of political prisoners in Casablanca. Photo Via: @LeJebly

Morocco’s Arab Spring was short lived. The protest movement that emerged was somewhat pacified by the State with promises of reform and initiatives to tackle corruption and improve human rights. A new constitution was passed. These promises were mainly empty rhetoric and voices of dissent continue, and continue to be suppressed by the authorities. It’s estimated that around 300 are currently in Morocco’s prisons for voicing opposition to the regime.

Over the past three years activists from the 20 February Movement, a youth-led pro-democracy movement which emerged in Morocco as part of the regional uprisings, have been subject to arbitrary arrests, torture and even murdered by the State. But the movement was not silenced. Read the rest of this entry

MOROCCO: Does Berber Federalism serve as an indigenous African model of Anarchist Federalism?

By Brahim Fillali

MOROCCO AS “NON-CAPITALIST” AND NOT “PRE-CAPITALIST” TERRITORY

I wish to stress this point because the prefix does not mean the same thing.
If we said not capitalist, it is assumed that there is an alternative mode of production wherein capitalism and other possibilities that are open to the future of society. History is not linear; no societies are sentenced to spend their historical development via capitalism. Read the rest of this entry

WESTERN SAHARA: Notes from Western Sahara

An Interview with Fatma El-Mehdi   24.03.2012

Gdeim Izik ©Kirby GookinAs the Arab Spring spread across several countries in the Middle East and North Africa, American philosopher Noam Chomsky argued that it did not originate in Tunisia, as is commonly understood. “In fact, the current wave of protests actually began last November in Western Sahara, which is under Moroccan rule, after a brutal invasion and occupation,” Chomsky stated. “The Moroccan forces came in, carried out – destroyed tent cities, a lot of killed and wounded and so on. And then it spread.”  Read the rest of this entry

MOROCCO: On Pre-Colonial Morocco

August 05, 2008   by Brahim Fillali – ex-CLER (Morocco)

Does Berber Federalism serve as an indigenous African model of Anarchist Federalism?

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MOROCCO: Rise and Fall of Feb20 Protest Movement

Ahmed R. Benchemsi   12.07.12

Seen from afar, Morocco’s 2011 events are the pitch-perfect tale of popular protests with a happy ending: after huge pro-democracy demonstrations broke out, the government complied without firing a bullet and a reformed Constitution was approved by popular referendum. Read the rest of this entry

WESTERN SAHARA: Western Sahara: the long, lonely journey of Sahrawi activism

December 12, 2012, by Angel L. Martinez

Two years after the brutal assault by Moroccan forces on the Saharawi camp of Gdeim Izik, Western media indifference continues while the international community remains silent towards ongoing human rights violations. Angel L. Martinez speaks to prominent activists and reports on the precarious prospects for Africa’s last colony. Read the rest of this entry

From Opposition to Puppet: Morocco’s Party of Justice and Development

[PJD party leaders celebrate their win in Morocco’s legislative elections. Image by Magharebia/Flickr.]

A protest repressed, a journalist beaten, an artist detained, a newspaper censored, and an activist tortured. Sixteen months after what was hailed as a “landmark” constitutional referendum, and exactly one year after a new government was elected, like a broken record, headlines from Morocco continue to repeat themselves. When the announcement for the 25 November 2011 parliamentary elections was made, the February 20 Movement and its supporters quickly agreed to boycott–a decision rooted in the prediction that the elections would bring about no real change. A year after the elections that gave the Party of Justice and Development (PJD) a majority win, the “path of reform” promised by the regime has yet to take off. Moreover, a combination of tax exemptions for the wealthy, food subsidies intended to prevent a popular uprising, and the disproportionate allocation of the state budget provide the outlines of an abysmal economic outlook for a country growing increasingly dependent on aid packages and International Monetary Fund loans.   Read the rest of this entry

An Account from Young Moroccan Political Prisoners: Rape and Torture in Police Custody

Sep 03 2012by Jadaliyya Reports

[The following report was originally published in French on Mamfakinch on 2 September 2012. It was subsequently translated into English. Both the English translation and original French version appear below.]

Following the 22 July protest against the high cost of living and the increase in prices, which was violently repressed and disbursed by riot police, six activists from the February 20th Movement were arrested. Their names are Samir BradellyAbderrahman AssalTarek RouchdiYoussef OubellaNour Essalam Kartachi, and Laïla Nassimi (Laila is on temporary release). Read the rest of this entry