Gender issues

Women in Hijabs denied entry at several Egyptian resorts

Rabat - Many Egyptian resorts and restaurants have adopted Hijab-free zone policies, turning women in headscarves away upon entrance. In a country where 90 percent of its population is Muslim, many feel that these bans are “discriminatory” against practicing Muslim women. The ban is reportedly popular at upscale resorts and restaurants often visited by foreigners, in cities such as Sharm el Sheikh and Hurgh ...

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Sarah Zouak’s Women SenseTour: A Journey for Women’s Empowerment

By Bochra Laghssais Ifran - Sarah Zouak is a 25-year-old French and Moroccan woman and a recent college graduate. Born and raised in France, she has two Master’s degrees: one in Management (Marketing specialization) from the business school ESCEM, and one in International Relations from IRIS. She has been interested in human rights, and more specifically in women’s rights, from an early age. She used to wor ...

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Challenging the Stigma of Women in Moroccan Society

By Firdaouss Boutaba Rabat - Imagine smiling after a slap in the face; then think of doing it all your life. This is the way women live in Moroccan society. Women’s lives are shaped by deadlines; that is, we are taught to believe blindly that as women we have a very short period to live, marry and have children, or else we will fall into the dungeon of spinsterhood or simply become scrap. Raised to take on ...

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Human Rights Watch calls on Morocco to decriminalize homosexuality

Rabat - In the wake of a mob attack on a gay man in Fez on June 29, New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) issued a statement asking Moroccan authorities to abolish Article 489 of the Penal Code, which criminalizes “acts against nature when committed between members of the same sex.” The statement said that HRW is aware of a series of cases in which men have been imprisoned under Article 489, arguing that ...

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I Want Asylum in Country Where My Rights Will Be Recognized: Fez Gay Man

Rabat - A man who was attacked on Monday because of his sexual orientation is seeking asylum in a country where his rights will be recognized and the law is respected. "I am demanding the right of asylum in a country where the law is respected,” the gay man, whose identity has not yet been revealed, told news website Goud.ma. In an interview with the Arabic-speaking website posted to YouTube, the man said t ...

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Moroccan Social Media Users Condemn Mob’s Assault of Gay Man

By Timothy Filla Washington - Following the emergence of video footage showing a mob in Fez beating a man dressed in woman’s clothing, many Moroccans have taken to social media to express their outrage at the attack. The overwhelming majority of commenters on Facebook and YouTube condemned the violence and called for the perpetrators to be punished. On June 30, Moroccan news station Goud TV posted a cell ph ...

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Moroccan Opposition Parties Denounce Arrest of Women for Wearing Mini-skirts

Rabat - Opposition parties PAM and USFP have joined forces to denounce the arrest of two women in Inezgane who are facing charges for "gross indecency" after having been arrested for having worn miniskirts last week. Deputies of the two parties gathered at the House of Representatives on Tuesday and declared that the arrest of the two young women might feed extremism and cause acts of terrorism in the count ...

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Public Prosecutor Opens Investigation After Assault on Gay Man in Morocco

Rabat - The Public Prosecutor at the Court of First Instance of Fez said in a communique issued on Tuesday that his office would open an investigation into the incident that occurred last night in the country’s spiritual capital, when dozens of angry people savagely attacked a gay man getting out of a taxi. “The Public Prosecutor has ordered the opening of a probe to identify people involved in the assault ...

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Mezouar: ‘Arresting Women for Wearing Mini-Skirts Is a Form of Terrorism’

Rabat - The National Rally of Independents (RNI) denounced the arrest of the two women in Inezgane for wearing mini-skirts and called the behavior of street vendors who harassed them and called the police a form of “terrorism.” In a communiqué released by the party in solidarity with two young women, Salah Eddine Mezouar, the party’s Secretary General and the Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs, expressed ...

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Video: Moroccan Woman Reacts Angrily to Man Who Said She is “Denuded”

Rabat - Amidst the controversy taking place in Morocco in recent days after the arrest of two young women in Inzegane, near Agadir, for being dressed “inappropriately,” a new video posted on YouTube on Sunday shows a man dressed in an Afghani-like abaya approaching a woman walking with another woman. The man, who appears to harbor Salafist views, told the woman she was “denuded.” Surprised by what the man s ...

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Morocco: Petition Calls for Release of 2 Women Arrested for ‘Indecent Dress’

Rabat - An online petition has garnered 3,588 signatures so far. Posted on Avaaz.com, the petition was launched by Moroccan activities shortly after the arrest of two young Moroccan women for "indecent dress." Under the theme “wearing a skirt is not crime,” Moroccan bloggers and social activists drew up a petition against the mandatory dressing code in Morocco. They condemned the arbitrary arrest of two you ...

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Morocco: Two Girls Arrested for Dressing ‘inappropriately’

Rabat - Police in southern Agadir arrested over the weekend two girls for "violating public decency" after their outfits were deemed inappropriate. According to daily newspaper Al Sabah, police in Inezgane (southern Agadir) arrested on Sunday near the city's weekly Souk two girls whose outfits were considered "indecent". Human rights activists in the city denounced the arrest of the two girls based on their ...

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