Morocco / by Alistair Galloway

This month, the United States government released a Moroccan national, who had been held at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp for 14 years. The Moroccan authorities hindered the opening of the country’s first IKEA store, just as Sweden declared it was considering recognizing Western Sahara’s right to self-determination. 87 Moroccans died during the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca during a stampede set off by overcrowding. In a separate incident, 51 people were injured in a bus accident on the way to Tangiers. The government arrested six suspected Islamic State-affiliated terrorists. UNICEF released a report detailing the striking amount of poverty-related disease fatalities among children under five-years-old in the country. In other news, Cuba is investing in a cigar factory near Casablanca. Production data shows that Morocco’s sugar production improved greatly over the last three years, producing enough to meet national consumption. The TGV rail line between Tangiers and Casablanca will be completed by early 2018, according to the nation’s state-owned railway company.