Rabat - Morocco once again lands on the underachievers list of Freedom House. Morocco’s freedoms score slipped two points from last year, “due to harsh state responses to major demonstrations throughout the year.”
Rabat – Morocco once again lands on the underachievers list of Freedom House. Morocco’s freedoms score slipped two points from last year, “due to harsh state responses to major demonstrations throughout the year.”
International NGO Freedom House for Democracy released its latest Civil Liberties Index that ranks civil liberties in countries around the world. The list, which includes the Arab region and the Middle East, indicates a decline in Morocco’s ranking for 2018.
Ranking Morocco as a “partially free” country, Freedom House allotted Morocco 39 points out of a total 100 in the index of freedoms, two points down from 2018.
The decline in the general index is the result of Morocco’s decrease in the civil liberties survey, which, according to the report, is due to “harsh state responses to major demonstrations throughout the year”.
Not surprisingly, with respect to freedom of the press, the NGO ranked Morocco as “non-free.” Freedom House added that it will issue a more detailed report on the freedoms’ status in each country at a later date.
The report categorized Tunisia among the “free countries,” scoring 70 points out of 100.
Overall, 2017 was not the year for freedoms. According to the NGO, “democracy faced its most serious crisis in decades in 2017.” Seventy-one countries suffered net declines in political rights and civil liberties, with only 35 registering gains. “This marked the 12th consecutive year of decline in global freedom,” according to the foundation.
In the MENA region, “authoritarian rule and instability reinforce one another,” according to Freedom House. Tunisia has stood out for its successful transition to democratic rule after hosting the first Arab Spring uprising in 2011.
However, 2017 was not a good year for the North African country. For the NGO, “earlier signs of backsliding became far clearer” as municipal elections were once again postponed, leaving unelected councils in place seven years after the revolution.
According to the NGO, “figures associated with the old regime increased their influence over the vulnerable political system, for example by securing passage of a new amnesty law despite strong public opposition.” The extension of a two-year-old state of emergency also “signaled the erosion of democratic order in Tunisia,” concluded Freedom House.
Edited by Elisabeth Myers