HRW slams Morocco over journalist's 3-year jail term

2018-07-19 08:26
(iStock)

(iStock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Human Rights Watch (HRW) criticised a Morocco court on Wednesday for sentencing a prominent journalist to three years in prison on a "dubious charge" relating to a northern protest movement.

Hamid el Mahdaoui was sentenced in June for "not denouncing" attempts to harm state security after he received a call from a man who said he planned to create armed strife in Morocco.

The court had rejected Mahdaoui's defence that as a journalist he often receives calls from strangers and that he felt the man's claims were "idle chatter", HRW said.

Well known for criticising the Moroccan government on social media, Mahdaoui is already serving a one-year sentence for inciting protests.

He received the call during the thousands-strong Al-Hirak al-Shaabi (Popular Movement) demonstrations that rocked the Rif region in 2016 and 2017.

HRW's Middle East director Sarah Leah Whitson said the charges against him "reek of an arbitrary use of the law on an outspoken journalist by authorities who have been radically reducing the space for critical reporting and commentary."

* Sign up to News24's top Africa news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER 

FOLLOW News24 Africa on Twitter and Facebook

Read more on:    hrw  |  morocco  |  north africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.