Following the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) that saw the attendance of Vice-President Joe Biden, Morocco hosts the World Human Rights Forum in Marrakech from November 27 to 30, with the participation of 5000 representatives from more than 100 countries, making it one of the biggest human rights NGOs gathering in the world, a promising step for Morocco, and Africa as a whole.
Morocco’s leapfrog in human rights is illustrated by the durable assistance from King Mohammed VI, whose implication in the 2011’s constitution opened the road to the kingdom’s reforms and democratization. With the creation of the National Human Rights Council (CNDH), Morocco sent a strong message to its citizens and the region, passing through a turbulent Arab Spring, illustrated by an open debate, a more powerful civil society, and an ever-evolving community.
The CNDH published very critical reports and the kingdom’s human rights situation and started to work with every components of the society to overcome problems and mentalities inherited from previous bureaucratic leaderships. Morocco dropped the prosecution of civilians by a military tribunal, and is working on an organization for the promotion of gender equality.
However, critics of these efforts are condemning Morocco’s handling of some manifestations, and the banning of gatherings organized by the Moroccan Association for Human Rights (AMDH). Another NGO close to the separatist movement Polisario is also using the forum for political and partisan ends, which Morocco warned from since the beginning.
The region being infested by terrorist activities, cells, and networks, the kingdom sensitive position leads it to be careful. The AMDH being financed by foreign entities, the Ministry of Interior chose to ban some of its gatherings, even though it lost against the AMDH in a trial, a unique case of judiciary transparency in the Middle East and the continent.
The kingdom has been praised for his handling of terrorism, his stability, and his role in preventing any abuse of religion by training Imams from various country in its moderate Islamic doctrine.