His Majesty King Mohammed VI
Brussels, 26 June 2009
On this International Day Against Drugs we ask your attention for the
fate of the prominent [Moroccan human rights activist Chakib El Khayari.
Chakib El Khayari has been arrested in Casablanca on 18 February 2009.
As chairman of the Human Rights Association of the Rif, he had made
critical declarations in the press concerning the level of corruption in
the drug control agencies of the Moroccan state. These agencies turn a
blind eye to the illicit export of hash from Morocco, and carry out a
repressive policy with regards to the farmers who grow cannabis. Both
policies undermine the development of the region in various ways.
The accusations against El Khayari did not justify his detention.
Various human rights organisations have asked for his release, many
letters have been sent to the Moroccan authorities, but until now, there
are no signs that Morocco takes these calls seriously.
On Wednesday 24 June, El Khayari was condemned to three years in prison
and 68.000 euro fine, for “offending the authorities and making
unauthorised currency transactions.” The latter refers to accusations
that el Khayari received (a few hundred) euro to pay a plane ticket to
Europe. El Khayari has been invited regularly to all kinds of congresses
and conferences in Europe.
The verdict against El Khayari is a sad example of the state of both the
human rights situation and of the fight against drugs in Morocco.
Moroccan authorities do not want the truth about a failed drug policy to
Chakib El Khayari is a courageous man, not afraid to stand up against
drug traffickers and corrupt officials. He is the kind of citizen that
Morocco should be proud of. This verdict damages the reputation of the
country and its drug policies.
We ask you to do anything that is within your possibilities to obtain
the immediate release of Chakib El Khayari.
Waiting for your response, Your Majesty, we remain,
On behalf of ENCOD,
Marisa Felicissimo, Belgium
Antonio Escobar, Spain
Joep Oomen, Belgium
Frederick Polak, The Netherlands
Jorge Roque, Portugal
You can copy this letter, sign it with your name and send it to the embassy of Morocco in your country. For a list of Moroccan embassies, see this page.
You can also send it to the embassy of your own country in Morocco or to the delegation of the European Commission in Morocco:
Délégation de la Commission européenne au Maroc
Riad Business Center, aile sud
Boulevard Er-Riad, quartier Hay Riad,
Boîte postale 1302
Téléphone: 00 98 57 37 212
For updated information see FreeChakib.com
See an interview with Chakib on Amazigh.tv