Morocco / by Lewis McKinnon

Morocco responded with outrage to a human rights report published by the United States (US) State Department which criticised Morocco’s human rights record. Morocco has vowed to increase the involvement of non-state actors in the fight against climate change. The Moroccan government was criticised by the leader of one of Morocco’s labour unions for discriminating against women. German Members of Parliament (MPs) voted on 14 May to add Morocco to a list of safe countries of origin in relation to its asylum application process. Morocco’s Minister of Higher Education, Dr Lahcen Daoudi, pushed for reforms for wider use of English in Moroccan universities. The Moroccan Ministry of Communication took the radical measure on 24 May of banning the reading of newspapers in public places. The Moroccan Organisation of Human Rights (OMDH) released a statement on 30 May calling for Morocco to implement a minimum employment age. Several of Morocco’s largest labour unions held a general strike on 31 May against pension reforms made by the government. The Leader of the Polisario Front, Mohamed Abdelaziz, died on 31 May. Tensions between Morocco and Algeria have risen after Algerian security services launched an investigation into Moroccan labourers working in Algeria. Morocco participated in a meeting of the 5+5 Defence Initiative countries on 11 May. Moroccan security forces arrested a Chadian national on 13 May in a counter-terrorism operation. Morocco ranked 14th globally in renewable energy attractiveness in a survey conducted by British audit firm Ernst and Young. A special report by analysts at The Economist commended Morocco for its relative recent economic success compared to the wider Arab region. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Morocco declined by 27.7 per cent in April.