Back to top

Abdessadeq El Bouchtaoui

HRD & Co-founder
National Association for Human Rights in Morocco

Abdessadeq El Bouchtaoui is a human rights defender and lawyer who represents activists in Al-Hoceima who have faced charges in relation to protests. He is also the attorney of the family of Emad El-Attabi, who died as a result of clashes between police and protesters in July 2017 during which over 80 people were injured. The human rights defender  has denounced excessive use of force by Moroccan forces against non-violent protesters and restrictions on freedom of expression and assembly. He is also the co-founder of the National Association for Human Rights in Morocco.

In Morocco, journalists and media workers critical of the government face harassment and arrest in some instances, and the country's press law includes prison terms for “maliciously” spreading “false information”. There are reports of torture and ill-treatment of human rights defenders in detention and activists held have been incommunicado.

Government officials can arbitrarily refuse registration of independent associations. Groups such as those that advocate on behalf of sub-Saharan immigrants and unemployed university students as well as organizations that defend the rights of Sahrawis and Amazighs (Berbers) face serious restrictions to their work.