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Government bans Le Monde opinion poll on royalty

Video by Fiona CAMERON

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-08-04

Morocco has warned French newspaper Le Monde against publishing an opinion poll on how people viewed King Mohammed VI. Two Moroccan magazines which took part in the poll were earlier taken off news stands.

AFP - Morocco's King Mohammed VI has done a good overall job in the first decade of his reign, but he needs to do more to reduce poverty, said an opinion poll Monday that has been banned in the country.
  
The French daily Le Monde hooked up with the Moroccan magazines TelQuel and Nichane to carry out the poll on the north African country's 10 years under the reign of Mohammed.
  
But the Moroccan magazines were taken off news stands on Saturday as Communications Minister Khalid Naciri explained that "the monarchy in Morocco ... cannot be the object of debate even through a poll."
  
He also warned that any Le Monde edition with a poll on the king would not be sold in Morocco.
  
Yet the poll, published Monday in Le Monde, showed that Moroccans have an overwhelmingly positive view of their 45-year-old monarch.
  
It said that 91 percent of the 1,108 people questioned by LMS-CSA, a local subsidiary of the French CSA polling institue, said they had a positive opinion of the king.
  
Forty-nine percent said they believed Morocco was a democratic monarchy, with 33 percent saying they thought it was an authoritarian state.
  
Only 37 percent of those questioned said they thought that poverty had decreased over the last decade, while 37 percent thought it had not changed and 24 percent thought it had got worse.
  
The survey also showed that Moroccans were not overly enthusiastic about the king's 2004 landmark family law reform, which boosted women's rights in divorce, property ownership and other areas.
  
Forty-nine percent of those asked said they thought the new laws gave too many rights to women, 30 percent said they gave them enough rights, and 16 percent said the law should be reformed to give them more.
  
Mohammed last Thursday marked the 10th anniversary of his ascension to the throne with a speech to the nation pledging to pursue reforms undertaken in the past decade.

Date created : 2009-08-03

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