Moroccan Launches Online Petition Against Use of Force Toward Teachers

Taroudant – A Moroccan activist launched an online petition on January 7 demanding that the officials responsible for the use of excessive force against teacher trainees be held accountable.The petition was launched on Avaaz.org under the title “Together to punish anyone who has a hand in the brutal suppression of teacher trainees.”It aims to collect 5000 signatures of those in support of teacher trainees. Since its creation, the petition has already garnered more than 3098 signatures. According to the activist who launched it, the excessive use of force by the Moroccan police toward teacher trainees is in contrast with the speech of the Morocco’s King Mohmmed VI, on the implementation of the Equity and Reconciliation Commission in 2004 in Agadir.This initiative came in response to the “harassment, repression of freedom of expression, and the affront to human dignity,” the petition reads.In the description, the author recalls Article 22 of the Moroccan Constitution, which states, “The physical or moral integrity of anyone may not be infringed, in whatever circumstance that may be and by any person that may be, public or private.”“No one may inflict on others, under whatever pretext there may be, cruel, inhuman, [or] degrading treatments or infringements of [their] dignity. The practice of torture, under any of its forms and by anyone, is a crime punishable by the law,” it adds.Police used unreasonable force to disperse teachers who organized peaceful sit-ins and marches Fez, Marrakech, Rabat, Agadir and other Moroccan cities, demanding the annulment of two government decrees.The photos of injured teacher trainees were shared widely on social media, with comments denouncing the use of force against peaceful protestors.Nabila Mounib, leader of the Unified Socialist Party (PSU) and Mohammed Grine, member of the Party of Progress and Socialism (PPS), part of the PJD-led coalition government, condemned the excessive use of force by the Moroccan police.