Connect to share and comment

A reported blog about all things Middle East and North Africa.

Thousands of protesters continue to demand reform in Morocco

Seven months after demonstrations first began, some Moroccans are still seeking political change
Morocco protests king mohamed vi arab spring 09 26 11Enlarge
Protestors gather in Marrakech on September 25, 2011 for a demonstration organised by the youth-based February 20 Movement calling for reforms in the Arab world's oldest reigning monarchy. (ABDELHAK SENNA/AFP/Getty Images)

One day after pro-reform protests erupted throughout Morocco, videos uploaded to social media websites on Monday offer insight into the scale and intensity of the crowds that continue gathering for weekly demonstrations in the North African kingdom.

Thousands of protesters took to the streets of several major cities in Morocco on Sunday, demanding greater political reform and threatening to boycott the kingdom’s upcoming parliamentary elections.

Small-scale demonstrations first began in Morocco on February 20, around the same time a similar wave of popular discontent swept across the region.

Perhaps to avoid the fates that befell neighboring rulers in Tunisia and Egypt, Morocco’s King Mohamed VI pledged political reform for the country’s historically weak parliament and office of the prime minister.

Although constitutional amendments were passed by a majority of Moroccans earlier this year, some have complained that the reforms - and the King’s powers - do not go far enough.

More from Casablanca: Constitutional reforms spark debate in Morocco

“Head of the army, it’s too much — head of the religion, it’s too much,” chanted a crowd at similar protests last week, according to the Associated Press.

The AP reported that Sunday’s demonstration in Casablanca, where around 10,000 people gathered, was the largest in that city “in months.”

Another 2,000 protesters marched in Rabat, the capital, to the parliament building. Agence France-Presse reported that 1,000 protesters took to the streets of Tangier and Marrakech.

This video, reportedly shot yesterday, shows hundreds of protesters marching down a crowded street in Casablanca. Other videos show different angles of the same protest in Morocco’s largest city, as well as the throngs of people chanting in Rabat and Tangier.

Protesters in Casablanca held up placards reading "Corruption is Wrecking Our Lives" and "More Social Justice", according to AFP.

Chants in that city also urged fellow Moroccans to boycott the country’s parliamentary elections, reported the AP.

Moroccans head to the polls for parliament on November 25.  

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/the-casbah/thousands-protesters-continue-demanding-reform-morocco