Moroccan Prime Minister’s party sues journalist Hanane Bakour for Facebook post

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Journalist Hanane Bakour was summoned by the authorities for comments she made criticizing the National Independence Rally party.

Moroccan authorities summoned journalist Hanane Bakour on Thursday after the National Rally of Independents (RNI) filed a complaint against her, Bakour announced on her Facebook page.

The RNI, led by Moroccan Prime Minister Aziz Akhannouch, sued Bakour for “defamation and insult” following a Facebook post she wrote last month.

“The RNI has chosen to make me the first citizen and the first woman journalist in its journey of ‘re-educating Moroccans’,” Bakour said on Facebook on Thursday, referring to comments made by Akhannouch in December 2019, in which he said Moroccan citizens should be “re-educated,” in a controversial statement at the time.

Almost a month ago, Bakour asked in a Facebook post: “How can the current president of the region of Guelmim-Oued Noun, M’Barka Bouaida, agree to vote during the presidency of the regional council when his colleague Abdelouahab Belfkih, former regional PAM candidate for election to the presidency of the council, was dying. “

Belfkih was a candidate in the regional presidential elections, but on September 21 a shotgun bullet ended his life at his home on September 21. The case was closed for “suicide”.

The death occurred on the day of the vote; however, the candidates decided not to postpone the elections.

Bakur, editor-in-chief of Al Yawm24, a Moroccan newspaper created by Taoufiq Bouachrin who was sentenced to prison in 2018 on rape charges which he says are politically motivated, underlined her right to freedom of expression by showing that she was ready to face the ruling majority party in court.

“I have expressed positions which do not affect any party or person, neither by insult nor defamation,” she said. “No one has the right to deny us the right to express ourselves under any pretext. I will defend their right to speak and express themselves.”


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