Morocco court upholds Hirak movement protesters’ sentences

BBC Newslight

A Moroccan court has rejected an appeal against the prison sentences of activists who demonstrated against corruption and unemployment.

Dozens of people stood outside the Casablanca court demanding the prisoners’ immediate release ahead of the ruling.

The authorities have accused the activists of being separatists.

Protests rocked the North African country in 2016 and 2017 after the death of a local fishmonger.

Mohcine Fikri was crushed to death by a rubbish lorry in the city of Al-Hoceima as he tried to protect his fish, which had been confiscated by the police.

His death in October 2016 prompted a wave of anger, with thousands taking to the streets accusing authorities of abuse of power and corruption.

The so-called Hirak movement spread throughout the northern Rif region, and about 400 people were detained – drawing further demonstrations.

In June 2018, courts sentenced the leader of the movement, Nasser Zefzaki, to 20 years…

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