Photo Credit DR/Yabilada
Morocco World News
Lede: The European Union (EU) has denied rumors that it will ban Morocco from exporting products from the southern region of Western Sahara to European states.
Key Background: The union will apply the same standards to all imports into the European market from all countries and territories, including Morocco’s Western Sahara.
Why this is newsworthy: The question of how products exported from the Western Sahara will be labeled has been a recent point of focus. This latest statement by the EU reaffirms not only Moroccan sovereignty over Western Saharan exports, but also over the territory itself.
Lede: A group created by the families of Moroccan nationals who fought for ISIS in Syria and Iraq has called for the intervention of King Mohammed VI to see their loved ones repatriated to Morocco.
Key Background: While welcoming the royal pardon granted on January 11 to women accused of terrorism, the NGO’s executive office hoped that its members would be able to benefit from the same measure. It recalled, in a press release, that Moroccan «children and mothers live in deplorable conditions (…) they are deprived of the basic conditions of a dignified life».
Why this is newsworthy: The appeal addresses both regional politics and human rights. As the article states, these women and children are living in a liminal physical and emotional state, caught between worlds. Depending on developments, this case could stir dialogue on women’s rights as Moroccan citizens.
The North Africa Post
Lede: Four major dams with a total storage capacity of 1.42 million cubic meters will be built by 2027 in Morocco’s Northern Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima region.
Key Background: These dam projects are part of the 2020-2027 national water plan, sealed lately at a ceremony chaired in Rabat by King Mohammed VI. The plan aims at ensuring sufficient water supply in the Kingdom over the next seven years, and diversifying drinking and irrigation water supply notably through dam building, in a bid to bring up Morocco’s water storage capacity to 27.3 billion m3.
Why this is newsworthy: The proposed plan highlights the heightened significance of water politics in the climate crisis era and Morocco’s efforts at determining its own sense of water security. The social, economic, and environmental impacts of such infrastructure have yet to begin in earnest, but could be severe, not only for Morocco, but also for other countries sharing watersheds, winds, and ecosystems.