News of the Day: September 16, 2019

By Ella Feldman

Moroccan Journalist on Trial for an Abortion She Says She Never Had

by Aida Alami for the New York Times

Lede: This weekend was supposed to have been a celebration of love. The invitations had been sent, the flowers and cake ordered. Family and friends were getting ready to witness the wedding of a young Moroccan political reporter and a Sudanese university professor she met at a human-rights conference.

Nut Graph: “Instead, Hajar Raissouni and Rifaat al-Amin were arrested on Aug. 31 as they were leaving a gynecologist’s office in the Moroccan capital Rabat. They were charged with having sex outside of marriage and an abortion, both crimes in the North African kingdom. The arrests outraged many in Morocco who saw it as another example of the government persecuting critical journalists and activists by charging them with moral crimes.”

Why is this newsworthy? Although the arrests happened two weeks ago, the story of Hajar Raissouni remains one of the Kingdom’s most important stories. Alami’s piece, published yesterday, offers a comprehensive look at all angles of Raissouni’s situation.

New Data Shows Morocco is the Largest Supplier of Cannabis to Europe

by Safaa Kasraoui for Morocco World News

Lede: International analytics company New Frontier Data released new data on drug trafficking on September 10. The analytics company claims that Morocco is Europe’s biggest cannabis supplier.

Why is this newsworthy? The 2019 European Drug Report was just published, and it concluded that Morocco supplies more cannabis to Europe than any other country. Although cannabis is an illegal drug in the Kingdom, it is clearly still present.

Thai Culinary Week Underway in Morocco From September 19-26

by Juliette Owen-Jones for Morocco World News

Lede: The Royal Thai Embassy in Rabat has announced that cities across Morocco will be host to a Thai Culinary Week from September 19 to 26.

The week is hosted by the Thai embassy in collaboration with the Office of Vocational Training and Promotion, the Moroccan Federation of Culinary Arts (WVF) and the Touarga Hotel Professional Qualification Center.

Why is this newsworthy? This story is about the announcement of a nation-wide upcoming event that Moroccans might be interested in. Furthermore, it gives insight into the priorities of the Kingdom—according to a statement from the Thai embassy, the week is part of a cultural cooperation between the Kingdom of Thailand and the Kingdom of Morocco.

Photo: Mosa’ab Elshamy/Associated Press