After seven years of implementation of the partnership for democracy between the Parliament of Morocco and PACE, the Standing Committee has made a “positive assessment” of its results, stressing that Morocco has made progress in strengthening democratic governance and the rule of law, in particular the passing of almost all the institutional acts provided for in the 2011 Constitution, the reform of the judiciary, and the reform of the electoral legislation.
“The Moroccan authorities must promote ownership of the reforms by strengthening the resources available to Parliament at national level, and at local level by the implementation in practice of the process of devolution,” the parliamentarians said, adopting a resolution based on the report by Bogdan Klich (Poland, EPP/CD).
While noting that a de facto moratorium has been maintained since 1993, the Assembly nevertheless expressed concern about the fact that the Moroccan courts continue to impose the death penalty. It reiterated its call on the Moroccan Parliament to abolish it and, in the meantime, to promote a de jure moratorium on executions.
With reference to the judicial follow-up given to the events in Al Hoceima, PACE also recommended introducing a change of culture in the judiciary by promoting the principle of proportionality of sentences, in particular through a revision of the Penal Code.
Pointing out the improved representation of women in the political sphere, PACE invited the Moroccan authorities to step up the protection of women against all the forms of violence and discrimination from which they suffer, including in inheritance and marriage matters. It also welcomed Morocco’s migration policy, based on “an inclusive vision of the integration of migrants into Moroccan society.”
Finally, the parliamentarians called on the authorities to continue the creation of a common legal area between Europe and Morocco by ratifying a number of Council of Europe conventions, relating in particular to the mutual administrative assistance in tax matters and to the counterfeiting of medical products.
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The Moroccan Parliament was granted partner for democracy status with PACE on 21 June 2011 on the basis of Resolution 1818 (2011). It is the first parliament to have been granted this status, introduced by PACE in 2009 to develop institutional co-operation with the parliaments of neighbouring States of the Council of Europe. A first evaluation of this partnership was made in 2013 and a second in 2015.