NORTH AFRICA

Morocco’s king dismisses ministers after weeks of protests in Al Hoceima

A women shouts slogan during a demonstration against official abuses and corruption in the town of Al-Hoceima. (Reuters)

Morocco’s King Mohammed VI has relieved ministers of his cabinet on Tuesday after weeks of mass protests gripped the northern city of Al Hoceima, Al Arabiya's correspondent has reported.

Months of protests roiled northern Morocco earlier this year after anger was sparked by the gruesome death of a fisherman who was crushed to death in a rubbish truck as he tried to retrieve a confiscated catch.

The largely peaceful demonstrations snowballed from grievances over poverty into a major challenge to the authorities in the kingdom.

In response, security forces launched a crackdown, slinging the alleged leaders of the mainly young protesters in jail in May and June.

On Tuesday some 20 other defendants arrested over the protests were also due to appear for their fourth hearing.

In addition, the Casablanca court was expected to hear the case of journalist Hamid El Mahdaoui, who is accused of failing to inform the authorities of an attempt to harm “state security” over the protests.

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Last Update: Tuesday, 24 October 2017 KSA 21:28 - GMT 18:28
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