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The Moroccan Judicial system has finally issued its verdict, a little over a couple of hours ago, on the cases of all the Rif Hirak leaders it had been trying over the past few months, handing down unforgiving sentences ranging from 20 to 2 years in length, and totaling over 340 in all. A simple preliminary look at these cruelly punitive sentences quickly sends all hopes anyone watching the situation unfold, ever had for a Democracy, Justice or the illusion of the Reconciliation with Rif, down the gallows to die. Nacer Zefzafi, the charismatic Hirak leader along with Nabil Ahamjik, Waseem El Boustati and Samir Aghith, were on the receiving end of the sternest the Moroccan courts have to offer on, racking in 20 years each for their role in the movement. The next batch down is a deck of 15 years handed down to Mohamed El Haki, Zakaria Adahshour and Mohamed Bouhanouch, followed by a cluster of 10 years, another of 5, then 3 and 2 respectively. 
Ever since their collective and Hollywood style arrest a year ago, all the Hirak leaders have been consistently reporting acts of cruelty and inhumane treatment for the duration of their incarceration at the hands of the world renown sadistic and sociopathic Moroccan henchmen, with their infamously disgraceful track record of torture and abuse. For instance, Mohamed Jelloul, the undisputed godfather and spiritual leader of the movement, though he was incarcerated for most of it, also wasn’t spared. He had just left prison after a 5 year long stretch for his involvement with the organization of the February 20th movement in 2012, and was plucked right back up with the rest a mere 40 days after his release, only to be sentenced to 10 years, this time around. Nacer Zefzafi, spoke in open court about his torture and rape with a wooden bat, prior to being brought to a solitary cell, away from the rest of the prison population for the entire duration of his incarceration. Equally, Rabii Al Ablak also complained of torture and beatings and having had a loaded gun pointed at him at one point and his clothes striped from him while being threatened with rape. When his requests to open an investigation in his torture allegations went unanswered, he entered a series of hunger strikes, the longest of which lasted 48 days and nearly killed him. Not to be outdone, nearly all the political prisoners have entered a hunger strike at one point or another, during their yearlong incarceration, in an effort to get some of their very basic rights restored. As far as everybody knows, Rabii is, until the writing of this article, still on his 30th day of another hunger strike and his life is in real danger, which still did not spare him a harsh sentence of 5 years. Journalism and the press also got its share of repression when Mohamed Al Asrihi and Abdelali Houd were penalized with a 5 year long sentence each for running the online news sites of Rif24 and AraghiTV correspondingly and Jawad Essabiri got 2 years for being on the staff of Rif24 as well.
Early in the evening last night on June 25th, and in a surprising twist of events, Investigative Journalist and Reporter Hamid Mahdaouy, who was also detained at the same facility, facing an equally inhumane treatment and heavy charges for his role during the Hirak, got a sudden and unecpected court decision to try him separately. A decision that stunned the public attending the trials and his defense team alike, most likely in an attempt to eliminate all possible complications the Moroccan courts might face at sentencing, as it knew all along that all of the Hirak leaders were going to be massacred, legally speaking. Having that one reporter in their midst who was arrested many months after they were, with a different set of charges against him was only going to further obfuscate the sentencing process.
During their trials, the Hirak leaders were not afforded the opportunity to present evidence or witnesses in their own defense. They stood in open court, many times, and accused it of losing its impartiality and commitment to justice, therefore infringing on their universal rights to a Fair Trial, otherwise guaranteed to them not only constitutionally, but also internationally through every convention and treaty that Morocco prides itself on being a part of. When all their attempts and those of their attorneys went in vain, the group decided, in unison, to boycott the trial proceedings and instructed their respective defense teams to act in a similar fashion. As such, there was no closing statement from the defense team, nor did they get to cross-examine the prosecution witnesses.
These young men who, by all accounts, have done nothing but organize amongst themselves and took the streets at the wake of the state-sanctioned murder of fishmonger Mohcin Fikri in October 2016, which had brought the entire city of El Hoceima and its surrounding suburbs together to demand justice for him as well as shed the light on the marginalization of the region, due to the royal decree, deeming it a military territory. These educated, polite, ethical and soft spoken young men and women got their heads together and took to the streets to demand a cancer center, a university and to lift the militarization on their city, only to be accused of some of the worst crimes out there including separatism, and treason. 
Merely a few days after the holiday celebrating the end of Ramadhan, Riffians and the rest of Morocco and the world is stunned at the callousness of the Moroccan regime, and directly points the finger not just at the judicial system and its lack of impartiality, or the government itself, but at the royal institution no less, for, all the judgments rendered in courts today, were so on the name of “his majesty” the king, leaving all those who heard in shock and disbelief, having no choice but to blame the institution for having influenced and directly inspired these trials, considered by most Moroccans as well rehearsed scenes, and nothing but smoke in mirrors to cover up the entire regime’s conspiracy against all those who dare challenge it.
Today will forever remain deeply etched in the memories of those who care enough to remember, how justice was gruesomely beheaded at the guillotine and innocence massacred at the altar of tyranny. Today, marks an important milestone in the lives of all these women, wives, mothers and sisters, left to raise little children without the men in their lives, their chants of freedom and (Youyous/Zghreedas) filling the stale, depressed air suspended above the skies of the bleeding Rif. Today is the day nobody has any more delusions about the extent to which the Moroccan regime is willing to go to protect its throne exactly the way it is.  Today is the day hopes for a better Morocco simply committed suicide, rather than crash at the shores of despotism and tyranny. Today is the day dictatorship declared a bloody victory over all. A sad day, indeed, for justice seekers everywhere in Morocco.

بتاريخ الأربعاء 27 يونيو 2018 - 04:25:10 / عدد التعليقات :

Rif is a historically marginalized region in the North African country of Morocco. The Riffians are sparking a revolution. 


The Pivotal Moment When It All Happened


October 29, 2017 will mark the anniversary of the death of Mohsen Fikri, a fisher-seller from the Northern region of Morocco who was crushed inside a garbage truck attempting to retrieve his confiscated fish merchandise.
 Selling fish was his only way to provide his family with bread on the table every day, and yet the Moroccan authorities complained about a so-called license that Mohsen Fikri allegedly did not posses. Witnessed esses heard the men argue in the crowded streets of Al-Hoceima, Morocco (Rif). That same night, the authorities confiscated his fish and threw them into the garbage truck. Witnesses also saw how the man desperately jumped inside to save whatever was left of his merchandise. His fellow countrymen were watching the event unravel into what they could not foresee: the beginning of the Riffian Revolution. 
“TaHan Mo!” Arabic: "طحن مو!" was reportedly yelled by the Moroccan police officer to Mohsen Fikri while he was still inside the garbage truck. In English, this roughly translates to: “Grind his Motha—!” A clear order to crush him inside the garbage truck was therefore given with no remorse. Riffians around him were immediately shocked, outraged, and devastated as they tried to find a way to save this poor man’s life. Hashtags, pictures, and videos were shared within minutes or even seconds of the incident on several social media outlets, mainly Facebook. 
The story of this tragic man’s death was subsequently featured on popular media outlets such as Al-Jazeera , Al-Arabiya, and Western news outlets such as BBC and The New York Times
 
 
Riffians holding a picture of Mohsen Fikri protesting outside on the streets of Al-Hoceima, Morocco
 
 
His legacy lives on after a Pandora’s box was unleashed marking yet another uprising in the Rif, a historically marginalized region in North Africa inhabited by the indigenous people, the Amazighs. They speak an entirely different language from Arabic, and therefore do not consider themselves as Arabs like the other Arabic-speaking North Africans. The people of the Northern region of Morocco are known as “Irifiyen,” Riffians in their language Tarifit, a variant of the indigenous language of North Africa, Tamazight. For decades and decades they have been victims of a series of genocides, kidnappings, and systematic violence from the early years of their struggle for independence in the 1920s till this day. 
 
The 1950s and 60s under the rule of the Moroccan King Hassan II was one of the bloodiest eras for this people where a large number of people were murdered by airstrikes, turning this into genocide of an indigenous population. The Riffians were also victims of chemical weapon attacks from Morocco, Spain, and France during the wars of the 1920s where they were officially declared a sovereign nation from 1921–1926. Unfortunately, they lost the war against the Spaniards and remained under the control of Morocco, leaving Spain with the cities of Melilla and Ceuta as their territories.
 
 Abdelkarim Al-Khattabi was the name of their glorious and headstrong leader who led the battles against foreign occupation. Before the tragic death of Mohsen Fikri, there were martyrs like him as well. 
There was a singer and activist who were beheaded by the authorities. Hocine Belkich and five young adults who were also political activists were tortured at a detention center and then burned alive. 
So as you can see, it is no wonder that such an event could unleash yet another spark to provoke this nation to rise up once again and reclaim their basic human rights.The leader of this movement is of utmost importance as well. His picture is the thumbnail of this article, and he has become the symbol of resistance for this movement. His name is Nasser Zafzafi from Al-Hoceima, Morocco. He was a simple man at first visiting with people on strategies on how to get the attention of the government and media in order for their voice to be heard. 
He quickly gained popularity and recognition through his activist videos on Facebook and Twitter. On June 2017, he was arrested along with other political leaders such as Mohamed Jaloul. From October 2016 till this day, a series of violent outbreaks between protesters and the Moroccan authorities has left many innocent young people dead by police brutality. 
Nasser and others are still in prison and have released statements of torture and humiliation by the police in the Okacha prison in Casablanca. All of North Africa and those who sympathize with this nation, its history, culture, and cause wait impatiently for justice to be done unto these political prisoners. Let it be known that one day truth will rise over darkness. 
I say this on this occasion of the month of October, a period which in many cultures around the world, it should be a time to commemorate those who have fallen or passed away and to remember that we must always hold on to hope in a time of despair. 
 

بتاريخ الثلاثاء 17 أكتوبر 2017 - 15:11:34 / عدد التعليقات :

Un ami m’a dit : « Tu n’a rien gagné en combattant Laraichi pendant des années. Au contraire tu as beaucoup perdu : tu n’as pas travaillé avec les télévisions depuis très longtemps. Et tes films et tes spectacles de théâtre ne sont jamais diffusés à la télévision ! ». Ma réponse a été très simple : gagner un combat, dans n’importe quel domaine, est une chose relative. Cela dépend du point de vue dans lequel on se met. C’est comme pour un plan cinéma, il dépend de l’angle de la pris de vue. Et puis, un combat juste ne peut jamais être perdu. Personnellement, j’estime que j’ai bien largement gagné mon combat contre Laraichi, et ce n’est pas encore fini. Certes, j’ai beaucoup perdu matériellement. Mais qu’importe, j’ai gagné moralement :
-Je suis dans un état moral, psychologique, intellectuel et spirituel très positif. Je suis même au comble de la béatitude, de la « Nirvana » comme dirait un bouddhiste. Je suis fier de tout ce que j’ai pu accomplir dans des conditions difficiles, marquées surtout par le harcèlement et la pratique illégale instituant l’interdiction de toute collaboration avec les chaînes nationales : le Grand Patron l’avait bien signifié expressément et lors d’une réunion officielle : « Wallah la bka drab fiha darba maa ! » (Il est désormais interdit de toute collaboration avec moi). Et il va de soit que quand Laraichi dit « avec moi », il faut entendre « avec les télévisions nationales », car il les considère comme un legs familial ! Autre point positif : je jouis d’une bonne image professionnelle et sociale, et cela aussi contribue à me booster le moral…
Par contre, Mr Faiçal Laraichi a aujourd’hui, ainsi que tous ses acolytes, l’une des plus mauvaises images sur les plans moral, social et intellectuel dans tout le pays. Pire, il est définitivement entré dans l’histoire de la télévision nationale comme le patron le plus corrompu, celui qui a érigé la politique de "Bak sahbi", appellation populaire de la politique basée sur la corruption, le clientélisme, le favoritisme et l'abus de pouvoir, que le « Hirak du Rif» dénonce sous l'appellation "Fasad" (corruption). Sa mauvaise réputation a même dépassé les frontières du pays. Et le plus pire l’attend quant il aura quitté son poste et se retrouver dans la même situation que tous ses semblables, ceux qui passent le restant de leur vie avec cette peur bleue de se rendre dans un lieu public de peur de se retrouver face à l’une des nombreuses personnes auxquelles ils ont fait le plus grand mal lors de l’exercice de leurs fonctions, condamnés ainsi à raser les murs jusqu’à la mort !
Alors, qu'en dites-vous ?

بتاريخ الجمعة 30 يونيو 2017 - 18:08:24 / عدد التعليقات :
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