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January 24, 2012

Self-immolating law grad dies in Morocco

Self-immolating law grad dies in Morocco

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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

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A 27-year-old law graduate who set himself on fire to protest graduate unemployment has died, according to his wife, the state news agency, and a hospital. Abdelouahab Zaidoun and a second protestor set themselves on fire at an Education Ministry building in Morocco’s capital, Rabat.

File:View of Rabat beach Coast.jpg
File photo of Rabat, where Zaidoun set himself on fire.

Zaidoun had been receiving treatment in Casablanca after carrying out his threat to set himself on fire when police allegedly denied food to protestors demanding public sector employment. Around 9% of Morrocans are jobless, but 15–16% of university graduates are amongst the unemployed. 8.5 million of the 32-million population are impoverished.

“I ask the human rights organizations for help in opening an investigation into whoever forbade the bread from going to the protesters,” Zaidoun’s 25-year-old wife Amina Naddam told The Associated Press, saying through tears she held the authorities responsible for his death. Naddam said her husband was from Essaouira but migrated to protest.

The economy continues to grow by several percent per anum but the jobs market is unable to cope with demand. Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane‘s government seeks to create 200,000 new posts a year but Benkirane accepts this is largely dependant upon the private sector. The target is to reduce unemployment to 8%.

Zaidoun moved from the city of Essaouira, seen here from file, to Rabat in order to protest.

After a two-week occupation of the building by protestors, police began preventing the delivery of food. Video showed Zaidoun being beaten by police as he retrieved bread thrown over the police’s heads; a fellow protestor sets himself on fire and Zaidoun catches light himself when he joins the first self-immolator.

Zaidoun suffered burns to more than 50% of his body. The other protestor is recovering. Both were among the 1,000 members of the National Association of Unemployed Graduates, one of several such organisations. There is a large security presence around the hospital where he died.

The once-rare practice of self-immolation has become more known since Mohammed Bouazizi set himself on fire in Tunisia in December 2010, giving rise to protests that saw the government ousted. His death in Sidi Bouzid became symbolic of the Arab Spring, which grew out from the subsequent Tunisian protests.



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March 30, 2010

Body of Sheikh Ahmed bin Zayed Al Nahyan found in Moroccan lake

Body of Sheikh Ahmed bin Zayed Al Nahyan found in Moroccan lake

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

File:Ahmed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.jpg

Sheikh Ahmed bin Zayed Al Nahyan
(Image missing from commons: image; log)

The body of Emirati Sheikh Ahmed bin Zayed Al Nahyan has been found in a lake near Rabat, Morocco. Sheikh Ahmed had been missing since his glider plane crashed four days ago.

Sheikh Ahmed was the managing director of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority at the time of his death. He was the son of Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and although he was the brother of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed he was not in the immediate line for succession.

The Spanish pilot survived the crash and is at the hospital in stable condition. Divers from several countries including Morocco, France, Spain, the United States, and the UAE all helped search for the missing Sheikh. The search had become more complicated after heavy rainfall over the weekend.

Sheikh Ahmed’s funeral will be held on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi.



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December 7, 2009

Guinean military leader in \’favourable\’ condition after attempted assassination

Guinean military leader in ‘favourable’ condition after attempted assassination

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Monday, December 7, 2009

Guinea
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Morocco said earlier today that Guinea’s military ruler, Moussa Dadis Camara, has undergone successful surgery for gunshot wounds sustained on Thursday in an apparent assassination attempt. Guinea’s military government is offering a reward for the capture of the former head of the presidential guard whose men are accused of carrying out the attack.

File photo of Captain Camara

The inspector of Morocco’s Royal Armed Forces’ health services said that Camara has had successful surgery for head trauma. In a statement issued by Morocco’s official press agency, Dr. Ali Abrouq said Camara’s condition is “not worrying.”

“The current health condition of the Guinean president does not inspire concern,” Abrouq noted in a statement. “The result of the operation is favorable.”

Camara flew to Morocco on Friday after being shot the day before by men loyal to his former aide-de-camp, Lieutenant Aboubacar Sidiki Diakite, who is also known as Toumba. Toumba escaped the attack, and is still at large with a group of the presidential guard.

Harouna Kone, a spokesman for the junta, commented that Camara should be able to return to Guinea by Wednesday. “The president is doing very well and we expecting that he will come back maybe on Wednesday […] he is in the Royal Hospital of Rabat, and I think that everything is well there. He called last night and [spoke] with his minister of communication and they discussed about something,” he said, as quoted by the Voice of America news agency.

Security forces, meanwhile, are patrolling Guinea’s borders in search of Toumba, and the government is offering a reward for information leading to his capture.

Guinea’s vice-president and defense minister, General Sekouba Konate, became the interim leader following the attempted assassination.

Thursday’s shooting followed an argument between Toumba and Camara about who should take responsibility for the killing of opposition demonstrators two months ago. Witnesses say Toumba gave the order for the presidential guard to open fire on people protesting Camara’s expected presidential candidacy.

Local human rights groups said that at least 157 people were killed on September 28; the military put the number at 57 people.



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