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Friday
Jun172011

Moroccan King Announces Constitutional Reforms

Cairo, Egypt - (Chris Hondros/Getty Images)(RABAT, Morocco) -- On Friday, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI unveiled new constitutional reforms in response to national demonstrations which began in February.

In March, King Mohammed said he would review the constitution after protests that swept through the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) reached the nation of over 30 million residents. The king presented the new reforms, which cut some of his powers, in a televised speech on Friday.

The new constitution would provide executive powers to the prime minister who would be elected instead of being appointed by the king. The prime minister will also become the head of the government though the king retains control of the military.

Berber would become an official language as well as Arabic and there would be freedom of expression and religion in the nation which is dominated by Islam.

Protests in the MENA region that has seen leaders toppled in Tunisia and Egypt were a catalyst for the demonstrations in Morocco. Morocco faces high unemployment and poverty similar to the nations in the region.

The proposals will be put to a referendum in July.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio