Moroccan police used water cannons early on Sunday to disperse thousands of young teachers protesting in the capital Rabat for better work conditions, a witness said.
Authorities were trying to end a rally of an estimated 15,000 teachers in front of parliament where they planned to spend the night ahead of an even bigger demonstration called by a coalition of leftist opposition parties, unions and civil society groups.
Policemen in anti-riot gear moved into action after negotiations between officers and teachers to ask protesters to leave the area broke down after several hours.
Authorities had offered to send buses to drive them to places where they could spend the night, teachers said. They had been chanting "Liberty, dignity, social justice."
There was no immediate comment from the police or the government.
Some teachers said they were protesting against contracts on which they have been hired. They are demanding full benefits and pensions like regular public servants.
Teachers across the country have been striking for three weeks in a row.
Of the country’s 240,000-strong teacher workforce, 55,000 have been hired since 2016 under a new contract system.
Morocco has come under pressure from international lenders to trim the civil service wage bill and strengthen the efficiency of the public sector.
IN PICTURES: Moroccans hold anti-terror vigil for slain Nordic hikersMoroccans gathered Saturday in front of the Norwegian and Danish embassies in ... Variety
Moroccan in UAE kills boyfriend, serves remains in meat dish to workersProsecutors in the United Arab Emirates are accusing a Moroccan woman of killing ... Variety
Morocco drops case against Spanish pro-migrants activistSpanish pro-migrants activist Helena Maleno said Monday that a Moroccan court has ... North Africa