International Federation: The arrival of the Coronavirus in Moroccan prisons is a matter of great concern

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4/15/2020

Rome – The International Federation for Rights and Development (IFRD) today expressed grave concern over the announcement by Morocco of the registration of 5 new infections of the Coronavirus in the local prison in the Grand Palace, in the west of the country.

The Rome-based International Federation said in a press release that, amid the global threat posed by the Coronavirus, which causes the “Covid-19” epidemic, the Moroccan authorities should release all detainees on political grounds or express their opinion.

The Moroccan monarch, King Mohamed VI, had issued a royal pardon in early April to 5,654 prisoners, but it did not specifically include prisoners of conscience and dissidents in prisons.

With the growing concern of the spread of Corona in Morocco, the General Commission for Prison and Reintegration Administration announced the implementation of quarantine measures for its employees and prisoners alike, to protect them and their families.

The International Federation considers that the measures are taken in Morocco to prevent the spread of the virus among prisoners, and the general delegate frameworks and their staff are insufficient and require further measures.

It stresses the need to release prisoners of conscience and peaceful demonstrations in Morocco, and to reduce the number of pre-trial prisoners to relieve overcrowding in prisons as a preventive and precautionary measure.

The International Federation also calls for the release of juvenile prisoners awaiting trial, elderly prisoners over 65 years of age, women prisoners with their children, and prisoners and women prisoners with special needs, while implementing measures for conditional release.

IFRD stresses that Morocco’s release of a large number of prisoners is welcome in light of the growing concerns surrounding the spread of Coronavirus, but the authorities should immediately release those who should not have been imprisoned in the first place, especially the detainees of opinion.

The International Federation for Rights and Development (IFRD) calls for the necessity of strengthening the necessary measures to ensure full respect for the human rights of all persons deprived of their liberty and to ensure that everyone who remains in detention receives services to prevent and treat disease.

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