First Published: 2017-01-05

Police break up protest in northern Morocco
Police disrupt protest in northern Morocco months after local fishmonger was crushed to death in garbage truck, as activists continue to demand reform.
Middle East Online

AL-HOCEIMA - Police have dispersed a protest in Morocco's northern city of Al-Hoceima, a rights group said Thursday, months after a local fishmonger's death in a garbage truck sparked unrest.

Security forces broke up the protest in the city centre late Wednesday as the demonstrators did not have a permit to protest, Mohamed Bassiri of the Moroccan Association of Human Rights (AMDH) said.

Footage circulated on social media showed police chasing dozens of protesters from the city's main square after asking them to end the sit-in with a megaphone.

It showed protesters on the ground who appeared to have been bruised, and other demonstrators being arrested. The protesters were later released, according to the AMDH.

Mouhcine Fikri, 31, was crushed to death on October 28 in a garbage truck as he tried to protest against the seizure and destruction of swordfish, which were not allowed to be caught at that time of year.

His death in the Rif -- an ethnically Berber region long neglected and at the heart of a 2011 protest movement for reform -- triggered protests nationwide.

Those protests have now stopped but activists in Al-Hoceima have continued to call for a thorough investigation, alongside broader demands for an end to widespread unemployment and corruption.

 

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