Drop Criminal Charges Against University Professor

Morocco Flag

Target: Dwight L. Bush Sr., United States Ambassador to Morocco

Goal: Drop charges against outspoken activists who have been harassed for fighting in favor of free speech.

Five activists have been criminally charged as part of a long sequence of harassment, threats and defamation against an outspoken academic by the Moroccan government. Professor Maâti Monjib and four others are accused of undermining internal security by taking funds to promote a foreign agenda.

Maâti Monjib is a highly regarded historian, journalist and activist who leads Freedom Now, a group focused on preserving freedom of expression and journalist rights. Recently, he has been on a hunger strike in response to a government travel ban imposed on him.

The Moroccan government has been using slander and other intimidation tactics to suppress Monjib’s freedom of speech. The charges are carried out under penal code article 206, which vaguely states that foreign funding cannot be received for peaceful expression that is “capable of harming the integrity, sovereignty or independence of the kingdom, or shaking the loyalty that citizens owe to the state and the institutions.”

The Moroccan government is forcibly silencing a respected individual in order to avoid criticism of their institution. Monjib and other activists have devoted their lives to the fight for peaceful expression, and now they are being charged as criminals because of it. Demand that the Moroccan government drop these accusations against Maâti Monjib.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Dwight L. Bush,

Professor Maâti Monjib and four other activists are facing charges from the government of Morocco. Officials have long been harassing and intimidating Monjib for exercising peaceful expression and he could now be facing up to five years in jail time.

Monjib has been charged under penal code article 206, which is a blatantly pliable law with vague implications. The use of terms such as “undermining internal security” allows the government to persecute any individual who expresses a critical analysis of the country. It is clear that the government is attempting to silence activists and progressives through these accusations.

It is urgent that you take action to help drop the charges against Maâti Monjib and other activists. Individuals need to be guaranteed the right to express critique of their government without the fear of retribution. We urge you to take action against these charges and push for reformation of the law that has allowed such injustice.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Denniss

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