Activist Helena Maleno is to appear in court again in Morocco

Helena Maleno in her home in Morocco./Ph. Fadel Senna
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Helena Maleno, a Spanish journalist and activist who was accused of allegedly helping migrants enter Spain illegally, will have to appear in the Tangier Appeal court once again, reports El Diario online newspaper.

The Spanish NGO Oxfal Intermon, which fights against poverty, denounced the fact that the Iberian government did not inform Morocco that the Spanish Public Prosecutor has classified the investigation for which the activist is called to appear before the Moroccan justice.

«If Helena Maleno has to appear in a Moroccan court, it is not because she has problems with the Moroccan justice. This is because the Spanish police accused her for being linked to an investigation transferred to Morocco», Francesc Mateu, the NGO's vice president told El Diario. «If there was a mistake and the Moroccan court does not know that this investigation has been classified, it is up to the embassy to find a solution to that», he added.

However, diplomatic sources believe that they do not have jurisdiction over such a case. On the basis a mutual legal assistance treaty signed between Morocco and Spain, they both agree that «this type of communication is the responsibility of the central judicial authorities designated by the Ministry of Justice in each of the two countries».

Oxfam Intermón, with social organizations affiliated to the Catholic Church, have issued a manifesto demanding the Spanish Interior and Foreign Ministries to immediately inform Morocco that the case is closed and that the Prosecutor's Office has no evidence of misdemeanor committed by Helena Maleno, during her calls for help from the Iberian maritime rescue services.

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