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Is Morocco a Democracy?

James Harrod | 16:12 UK time, Friday, 7 September 2007

Hi All...welcome to WHYS...we are off air now but you can follow the debate here...

Anu here. Hi all- TGIF! Well, if you were listening like I was at home yesterday, you probably noticed that the debate on baggy pants fell down (sorry, couldn't help myself). Well, it's a go today, as you'll see further down.

Moroccans are voting today, and it's expected that a moderate Islamist party will win lots of seats in Parliament. A third of Moroccans live in poverty, the King holds ultimate power and many feel he isn't doing his best, though they're not allowed to criticize him. In fact, the Moroccan monarchy is one of the world's oldest and most revered, despite allegations that the monarchy still imprisons and tortures critics....

...Hisham, one of our regular listeners who is Moroccan, emailed to say:
"I believe most Moroccans have lost any faith in the next polls. It is widely thought that the elections will bring no change, hence deepening the feeling of despair and anger in a population already affected by widespread poverty, illiteracy and all the other ills of the Arab world."

The Islamist party, the PJD, is said to be the most moderate in the Arab world and Hisham believes the Moroccan government has tried to scupper it winning an outright victory.

Here's the story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/4794188.stm
Post here: www.bbcnews.com/worldhaveyoursay

So it's a go today. We've got kids in California and Atlanta joining us...and the debate is already raging on the blog. Various towns and cities in the States want to stop youngsters wearing baggy pants (trousers to those of you in the rest of the world). Liberia is trying to the same. Do you agree that there are some fashions which don't belong in public?
Post here: www.bbcnews.com/worldhaveyoursay
Read Joni's post on the subject: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/worldhaveyoursay/2007/09/fashion_police_set_high_price_1.html

Sami Al-hajj is an Al Jazeera cameraman who's been held at Guantanamo Bay since 2002. Without charge .You can read about his employer's campaign to free "Prisoner 345" here: http://www.prisoner345.net. In Britain, our trade paper for journalists, Press Gazette, carried a front page appeal from Mr Al-Hajj's lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith in which he says that "Sami Al-Hajj is no more a terrorist than my granny". He also calls on the journalistic community to campaign for his release in the way we- and notably our programme- did for Alan Johnston. We'll be discussing Mr Al Hajj's plight on today's programme.

No one's sure how many people have been killed in Nicaragua and Honduras by Hurricane Felix, but they're pretty sure the death toll is set to rise. Bodies are being discovered on beaches and rivers. Some people are only just being rescued after surviving on nothing but coconuts. Leonardo is trying to contact people there who have survived.
Here's the story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6982722.stm

Talk to you soon,

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