Morocco / by Lewis McKinnon

The Moroccan government will raise the state retirement age from 60 to 63 by 2021 on 1 July. Protests were held on the streets of Rabat on 24 July to protest against the raising of the state retirement age from 60 to 63. The Moroccan government formally made a request to reintegrate into the African Union (AU) on 18 July. The Moroccan House of Representatives voted on 20 July in favour of a draft bill targeting violence against women. A new law prohibiting those under the age of sixteen to be in employment in Morocco was passed by the House of Representatives on 26 July. A new organisation to combat the threat of extremism has been created by Morocco’s community of academics and researchers. The Moroccan government, in cooperation with the United Nations (UN), agreed to fully restore the mandate of The United Nations Mission to the Western Sahara (MINURSO) on 14 July. A network of Islamic State (IS) cells, operating in Agadir, Amezmez and Laqliaâ, was dismantled by Moroccan police on 14 July. The United Kingdom’s (UK) Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued a travel alert for Morocco on 20 July due to the high threat of terrorism in the country. Morocco took its first delivery of the United States (US) manufactured Abrams M1A1 tanks on 26 July. Morocco’s central bank approved the creation of Islamic banks in the country for the first time. Morocco’s King Mohammed Vl presided over the signing of agreements worth around USD 770 million on 4 July. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a new two year agreement on 22 July, which will give the Kingdom access to USD 3.47 billion of emergency funding. The number of internet users in Morocco increased has increased so far this year by 34.4 per cent compared to 2015. The African Development Bank (BAD) announced in Morocco the allocation of USD 3 billion towards a fund for female entrepreneurs in Africa.