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Will Bouachrine’s trial face a similar end as Reda Benchemsi, Nadia Yassine and Tamek group ?

Although they belong to different backgrounds, Group Tamek, Ahmed Reda Benchemsi, Nadia Yassine and Khalid Alioua, have all something in common. They have all been prosecuted for heavy charges.

Will Bouachrine’s trial face a similar end as the ones of Reda Benchemsi, Nadia Yassine and Tamek group./Ph. DR
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Room 7 at the Casablanca Appeal court couldn’t host, yesterday, the huge number of journalists who came to cover Taoufik Bouachrine’s first hearing. The latter was very hectic to the point that the judge decided to postpone it to the 15th of March.

Regardless of the attention paid by media to Bouachrine’s trial, this may fade away with time. In fact, other important cases in the past, brought before the Moroccan justice as well, have ended up being completely forgotten.

Ali Anouzla : «glorifying terrorism»

On the 16th of September 2013, the police arrested Ali Anouzla, a journalist and editor of Lakome. After publishing an al-Qaeda video on his online newspaper, he was accused of «glorifying terrorism», «assisting criminals who have committed acts of terrorism» and «providing means for the execution of terrorist acts».

The arrest of a journalist who disturbed certain circles in Morocco and the Arab world is widely condemned by national and international human rights organizations. Some did not hesitate to establish the link between his arrest and his presence a few months before at a Polisario congress.

International pressure and mediation with the help of Ilyas El Omari allowed Anouzla to leave his Salé-based prison. Five years later, the journalist freely practices his profession.

Tamek group accused of «intelligence-sharing with the enemy»

On the 8th of October 2009, seven Sahrawis were arrested by the police at Casablanca’s Mohammed V airport. They had just arrived in Morocco after a trip to Algiers. A few days earlier, the group led by Ali Salem Tamek took part to a Polisario congress.

They were accused of «high treason», «intelligence-sharing with the enemy», «attacking the internal security of the State» and «undermining territorial integrity». «The government is not to neglect the provocations targeting the territorial security of the Kingdom», said the Minister of Communication and government spokesperson Khalid Naciri on the same day. A number of politicians have later issued statements denouncing the alleged support the seven Sahrawis showed for the Front.

On the 21st of December 2010, the investigating judge at Rabat’s military court dismissed the charges related of «intelligence-sharing» and kept the ones about «undermining the internal security of the State». The case was then forwarded to a civil court.

Subjected to international pressure, Morocco finally gave up on the case ordering to provisionally release members of the group. On April the 14th 2011, Tamek and two of his fellow inmates, detained at the Salé prison, were granted a royal pardon.

Nadia Yassine and Réda Benchemsi

Daughter of the founder of Al Adl wal Ihsane, a Moroccan Islamist association, was accused in 2006 of «undermining the monarchical regime and disrespecting the King» while the former editor of the French-language weekly Tel Quel was prosecuted in 2007 for «lack of respect for the King».

The first hearings of their trials had made headlines and were highly covered by media. Successive postponements to later dates of the two cases have finally overcome the enthusiasm of the press.

11 years later, both files were forgotten.

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