Hundreds of protestors rallied in Rabat on 17 March to press for a review of the legal exemption allowing a rapist to marry his victim, following the suicide of a Tangier teenage girl. Amina al-Filali, 16, drank rat poison last week in Larache, after being forced to marry her rapist. Under Moroccan law, rape is punishable by several years in prison if the victim is a minor. Marriage to the victim, however, shields the perpetrator from prosecution.

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information has condemned the continuation of the Moroccan security services suppression of peaceful demonstrations that began one week ago in the town of Beni Bouayach in the countryside of northern Morocco. The demonstrations continued for the whole week against the marginalization of the people there and for demands of greater social justice.

Moroccan police on Wednesday beat up protesters who were seeking to stage a demonstration in the capital Rabat in solidarity to anti-government protests in the north. A Reuters reporter and photographer saw at least three people injured after dozens of truncheon-wielding policemen chased a few hundred protesters around the streets of downtown Rabat. The demonstrators had been seeking to gather in front of a local government office.

Reporters Without Borders says it is disturbed by Morocco's recent newspaper censorship and attempts to suppress online free expression. Distribution of the leading Spanish daily El País was again banned on 26 February while two netizens have been given jail sentences in the past few weeks for criticizing the king on social networks.

Morocco is prosecuting activists who campaigned peacefully for a boycott of elections held three months ago, Human Rights Watch said. These prosecutions contradict statements by Moroccan officials that authorities arrested no one for advocating a boycott. One of several such trials resumes on 22 February 2012, before the Marrakesh First Degree Court. Charged with distributing fliers in violation of the law, the defendants were arrested in Marrakesh on 16 and 17 November 2011, as they began more