The glacial speed of reform in Morocco

(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at:


Within the month, King Mohammed VI would unveil his constitutional reforms and call for a referendum. The proposal stipulated that a prime minister, chosen from the largest party in parliament, would take over as the head of the government, although the king would retain control of the judiciary, the military, and the Islamic faith in Morocco. There was even an article guaranteeing women civic and social equality with men. The February 20 movement argued that the process had been undemocratic — but, according to Moroccan officials, 98 percent of voters approved the new constitution.

World leaders, ignoring allegations of fraud, praised Morocco’s handling of the reforms. The process was hailed as a model for the region. Not long after, a sixteen-year-old Moroccan girl named Amina Filali killed herself with rat poison in order to escape her husband, a man she had been forced to marry after he raped her when she was fifteen.