Rabat - The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe called on Moroccan authorities to decriminalize homosexuality and abolish polygamy.
Rabat – The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe called on Moroccan authorities to decriminalize homosexuality and abolish polygamy.
Four years after its implementation, the Assembly’s Committee on Political Affairs has issued an overall evaluation of the partnership for democracy between the Parliament of Morocco and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, also known as PACE.
On June 21, 2011, the Parliament of Morocco became the first partner for democracy with the Parliamentary Assembly under the terms of Resolution 1818 (2011).
During a plenary session held in Strasbourg from June 22 to 26, 2015, PACE debated the draft resolution, which is based on a report by Rapporteur Bogdan Klich (Group of the European People’s Party)..The session was marked by the presence of Moroccan Justice Minister Mustapha Ramid and several Moroccan MPs.
In the report, PACE called on the Moroccan authorities to take the necessary steps to remove the criminalization of homosexuality from the Criminal Code.
It also urged Morocco to step up efforts in the fight against discrimination and violence against women, and to ensure that women are duly represented at all levels of society.
The Assembly called on the Moroccan authorities to respect freedom of religion in accordance with paragraph 18 of the Universal Deceleration of Human Rights.
It also noted that Morocco must step up the pace of legislative and institutional reforms so as to fully implement the ambitions of the 2011 Constitution.
The assembly reiterated its call for the Moroccan parliament to abolish the death penalty in law, and pending abolition, to declare a de jure moratorium on executions.
It said that although a de facto moratorium on executions has been in place since 1993, courts in Morocco continue to pass death sentences.
It further called on the parliament to ensure full and effective respect for the right of association and freedom of expression of civil society organizations.
Commenting on the PACE’s recommendations, especially those regarding the criminalization of homosexuality and the abolition of polygamy, Minister of Justice Mustapha Ramid said in Strasbourg that the Kingdom’s values and history are totally different from those of European states.
Ramid recalled that Morocco has not yet applied for EU membership and is not obliged, therefore, to obey to the standards and laws in force with the European Union.
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