Morocco: Gay men to be tried for violating 'public modesty' over photo

Two Moroccan gay men are set to go on trial for violating “public modesty” after holding each other for a photo at a historic site in Rabat, and could go to jail for up to three years. Mohsine and Lahcen were touring and taking pictures near Hassan tower, the capital’s famous minaret, earlier in June when they were arrested by the police for supposedly standing too close to each other, activists said. It is not clear if the men were in a relationship.

Last month, Morocco sentenced three gay people to three years in jail, the first time the authorities are known to have used the maximum sentence to punish homosexuals. This week, the latest issue of Maroc Hebdo magazine controversially asked on its cover: “Should we burn gays?”

On Tuesday authorities arrested two French members of the controversial feminist campaign Femen after they protested topless in front of a Rabat landmark against Morocco’s treatment of gays. The women, one of whom had the slogan “in gay we trust” written in black on her torso, were expelled Tuesday evening. They had protested in front of the Hassan Tower, a landmark minaret in Rabat. Read More