Morocco blocks French newspaper after poll on king

4th August 2009, Comments 0 comments

Despite the poll portraying Moroccan’s positive view of their king, authorities in Rabat say the newspaper cannot be allowed into the country because the monarchy cannot be an object of debate.

Rabat – Moroccan authorities on Monday blocked the sale of French daily Le Monde after it published a poll on King Mohammed VI's 10 years in power, an official source said.

"The edition dated 4 August was refused authorisation to enter Moroccan soil at Casablanca airport," an official told AFP on condition of anonymity. "It will not be on sale in kiosks on Tuesday."

Moroccan magazines TelQuel and its Arabic version Nichane, which joined forces with Le Monde for the survey, were taken off news stands on Saturday.

Communications Minister Khalid Naciri explained then that "the monarchy in Morocco... cannot be the object of debate even through a poll."

The TelQuel group said Monday it would lodge a complaint with a Casablanca court Tuesday.

Ironically, the poll, published Monday in Le Monde, showed that Moroccans have an overwhelmingly positive view of their 45-year-old monarch.

It said that 91 percent of the 1,108 people questioned by LMS-CSA, a local subsidiary of the French CSA polling institute, said they had a positive opinion of the king.

Forty-nine percent said they believed Morocco was a democratic monarchy, compared to 33 percent saying they thought it was an authoritarian state.

AFP / Expatica

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