Protests held against the human rights abuses of women in Moroccan prisons


{jcomments on}Protests are held outside Moroccan embassies in various countries to protest against the human rights abuses in Moroccan prisons


Mrs. Doha Aboutabit, arrested 3 December 2009, is detained at Salé prison. During the revolt of 16 May 2011 at the prison, the security forces used firearms which wounded many prisoners. Though spared from these events, the women’s section was nonetheless taken over by the agents. Mrs. Aboutabit was physically abused to the point of fearing that she had broken bones. The prison administration refused to have her examined.



On 19 May 2011 Alkarama urgently asked the Special Rapporteur on Torture to enjoin the Moroccan authorities to stop the persecutions to which Mrs. Doha Aboutabit is being subjected and to open an exhaustive and impartial inquiry into her maltreatment.

Bushra, sister of Doha Aboutabit talking about her ordeal


Mrs. Aboutabit, a 26 year old doctor, is of Moroccan and French nationality. On returning to Morocco in April 2009, after studying medicine, she was named Head Physician at Ait-Qamra Hospital in the northerly Al-Hoceima region in July.


She was accused of having “financed terrorism” for having been asked some years earlier by her brother to send him a modest sum of money without knowing what usage he would make of it. Her brother ended up going to Iraq, where, according to the authorities, he died in 2008.


She was subjected to enormous psychological pressure and violence to make her admit to what she was accused of. She has continued through many hunger strikes to express her protest against the unfairness of her trial, following which she was condemned to four years in prison, and against the very bad conditions of her detention. Alkarama has previously brought this before the Special Rapporteur on Torture.


On Monday 16 May 2011, Salé prison saw a large revolt of political detainees, essentially those condemned following the Casablanca attacks in May 2003 following speedy and unfair trials.


The security services who intervened in these events initially used tear gas against the detainees gathered on the roofs, then, according to sources close to the detainees, fired live ammunition against some of them, causing an unknown number of injuries, some of them serious.


Although the women’s section of the prison was spared from this protest movement, it was nonetheless taken over by the special forces intervening. Mrs. Doha Aboutabit was seized by many special forces agents, who threw her onto the ground and violently beat her right in front of the guards and the prison authorities.


When her father visited her on Wednesday 17 May, she still had visible traces of the blows on her face and complained of many other wounds and hematomas on her body. She found herself unable to move her upper limbs, leading her to fear that she had broken bones. The prison administration decided that there was no reason to have her medically examined.


UN General Assembly Resolution 64/168, adopted 18 December 2009, explicitly states that States must ensure that any form of deprivation of liberty does not deprive the detained person of the protection of the law and must respect the guarantees regarding the person’s liberty, security, and dignity in accordance with international law.





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1 Comment

  1. January 9, 2015

    An intriguing discussion is worth comment. There’s no doubt that that you should write more about this topic,
    it may not be a taboo subject but generally people do not speak about such issues.

    To the next! Many thanks!!

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