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Morocco / Israel : Amir Peretz leads a parliamentary delegation in Rabat

Amir Peretz is back to Morocco. Received on the 17th of February 2006 by King Mohammed VI, the Israeli politician of Moroccan descent came back leading an Israeli delegation that attended a conference in Rabat.

Amir Peretz has visited Morocco with an Israeli delegation to attend a conference organized in Rabat./Ph. DR
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Anti-Israel activists are up in arms against the last visit of Amir Peretz, an Israeli politician who currently serves as a member of the Knesset for the Zionist Union, considering him a «war criminal». The former Minister of Defense has led an Israeli delegation that took part of a conference organized by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean in partnership with the World Trade Organization, on Sunday and Monday. The meeting’s objective is to «facilitate trade and investments in the Mediterranean and African region». 

In addition to the traditional disapproval of the National Working Group for Palestine, three groups in the upper house of the Moroccan Parliament, namely from the Justice and Development Party, the Moroccan Labor Union and the Democratic Federation of Labor, denounced in a communiqué Amir Peretz’ visit. The statement’s signatories indicated that inviting Peretz was a «violation of the decision taken by the Arab League to boycott Israel».

Organizing a sit-in to denounce Peretz' presence

Although the three groups did not plan a sit-in to boycott the meeting, the National Working Group for Palestine invited all Moroccan MPs to take part of a sit-in outside the House of Councilors, an invitation that fell on deaf ears. On the other hand, the NGO promised that it will demonstrate in front of the Parliament’s building in Rabat.

Indeed, the non-governmental organization organized a sit-in to denounce the presence of Amir Peretz. Members of the NGO demonstrated on Sunday in front of the Parliament in the Moroccan capital bringing together 14 associations, including one that belongs to Al Adl Wal Ihsane.

For the record, three Moroccan lawyers, Abderrahim Jamai, Khalid Sefiani and Abderrahmane Benameur, filed a complaint in 2006 against Amir Peretz, for committing «war crimes». On February the 17th 2006, Amir Peretz who was the leader of the Labor Party, was received by King Mohammed VI.

Born in Bejaad, Morocco in 1952, Amir Peretz was appointed as a Minister of Defence and worked later as Minister of Environmental Protection. Peretz who was a chairman of the Histadrut trade union federation managed to defeat Shimon Peres in the primary elections for the Labor leadership in 2005. He moved to Israel with his family after Morocco gained independence in 1956. He had left the opposition party for 8 years and rejoined it again in September 2005.

In July of the current year, Amir Peretz was competing against Avi Gabbay, who is also originally from Morocco, to win party’s leadership. Gabbay was later elected head of the opposition party succeeding Peretz.

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