Rabat – The Independence Party of Morocco proposed on Tuesday a new law to criminalize acts of racism and racial discrimination against foreigners.
The Independence Party’s proposal was presented during a meeting in the House of Councillors. During the meeting, the party proposed prison sentences ranging from one to three years for any individual guilty of making racist remarks against foreign visitors or residents in Morocco, according to Moroccan newspaper Al Massae.
Al Massae added that the party has urged the government to impose such measures because racist acts erode the country’s image national and at international levels.
The party also called on the government to hold a regular census for foreigners and other disadvantaged groups. The proposal aims to identify the gaps that persist in order to better integrate these subsets into Moroccan society, added Al Massae.
The parliamentary group recalled during the meeting that Morocco has become a hub for sub-Saharan migrants, some of whom seek better opportunities in Morocco or use the country as a stepping stone to reach Europe. Istiqlal insists that Morocco should provide migrants a decent standard of living and equal rights.
The party is determined that the time has come to end racism and discrimination between Moroccans and sub-Saharans. The proposition thus aims to abolish all forms of discrimination within the country, which has welcomed hundreds of sub-Saharan migrants in recent years.
The incident polarized public opinion. Some expressed outrage and accused fellow citizens of racist behaviors toward the immigrants.
Others have claimed that it is not “racism” and have called for the sub-Saharans to be removed from the area.
Still, others have voiced their concerns over the ineffectiveness of Morocco’s immigration policy, claiming that what happened at the makeshift camp was “predictable.”