International PEN welcomes the release, pending appeal, of Internet writer Mohammed Erraji on September 10, 2008. PEN continues to protest the two-year prison sentence and fine of 5,000 dirhams handed down to him on September 8, 2008 for criticizing King Mohammed in an online article. PEN considers the sentence to be in violation of his right to free expression, as guaranteed by Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, ratified by Morocco, and calls for the charges to be dropped and the sentence to be quashed.

Background Information

According to PEN’s information, the appeal hearing for Internet writer Mohammed Erraji was to be held on September 16, 2008. The outcome is not yet known. Erraji, aged 29, was arrested on September 4, 2008 for an article published in the online news web site Hespress accusing Morocco's monarchy of encouraging a culture of dependency. He was reportedly tried in the southern city of Agadir without the presence of a defense lawyer, at a trial which did not conform to international standards of fairness.

Write A Letter

  • Protesting the two-year sentence handed down to Internet writer Mohammed Erraji at a trial which fell far short of international standards;
  • Demanding the charges be dropped and the sentence to be quashed, in accordance with Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. 

Send Your Letter To

Abbas El Fassi
Le Premier Ministre
Palais Royal
Fax : 212 037 768656

M. Abdelwahad Radi
Le Ministre de la Justice
Place El Mamoumia

Please copy appeals to the diplomatic representative for Morocco in your country if possible.

Please check with PEN if sending appeals after October 17, 2008: ftw [at]