"In 788, about a century after the Arab conquest of North Africa, successive Moorish dynasties began to rule in Morocco. In the 16th century, the Sa'adi monarchy, particularly under Ahmad AL-MANSUR (1578-1603), repelled foreign invaders and inaugurated a golden age. In 1860, Spain occupied northern Morocco and ushered in a half century of trade rivalry among European powers that saw Morocco's sovereignty steadily erode; in 1912, the French imposed a protectorate over the country. A protracted independence struggle with France ended successfully in 1956. The internationalized city of Tangier and most Spanish possessions were turned over to the new country that same year. Morocco virtually annexed Western Sahara during the late 1970s, but final resolution on the status of the territory remains unresolved. Gradual political reforms in the 1990s resulted in the establishment of a bicameral legislature, which first met in 1997. Improvements in human rights have occurred and there is a largely free press. Despite the continuing reforms, ultimate authority remains in the hands of the monarch. "
"RABAT, MOROCCO (ANS) -- Compass Direct News (CDN) is reporting that Moroccan Christians are saying that Muslim extremists in the country are aiding and encouraging the government to pursue them by exposing and vilifying them on social networking site Facebook.
The CDN story says that Facebook user Gardes Maroc Maroc has posted 32 image collages featuring dozens of Christian converts, calling them “hyena evangelists” or “wolves in lamb’s skins” who are trying to “shake the faith of Muslims” on the Arabic-language site.
“The online images depict Christian converts and their families from across the country and include details about their roles and activities in churches, their personal addresses and anecdotal stories attempting to malign them,” the story continued.
CDN said that since March, the Moroccan government has expelled more than 100 foreign Christians for alleged “proselytizing.”
The story went on to say, “Since the deportations started in early March, it seems that authorities, extremists and society as a whole have colluded against them, local Christians said. Dozens of Christians have been called to police stations for interrogation. Many of them have been threatened and verbally abused.”
One Moroccan Christian who requested anonymity told CDN, “They mocked our faith.”
CDN stated that authorities interrogated the convert for eight hours and followed him for three weeks in March and April. During interrogation, he added, local police told him they were prepared to throw him in jail and kill him. Most Moroccan Christians that spoke to Compass said the attitudes of their Muslim relatives had shifted, and many have been kicked out of their homes or chosen to leave “to not create problems” for their families.
Another Moroccan Christian reported that a Muslim had taken him to court because of his Christian activities. Most Moroccan Christians that spoke to Compass said the attitudes of their Muslim relatives had shifted, and many have been kicked out of their homes or chosen to leave “to not create problems” for their families.
CDN said that Moroccan converts meet in house churches. Some of them have stopped meeting until the pressure subsides.
“The government is testing the reactions,” said Moroccan lawyer Abdel Adghirni on the recent pressure on Christians.
The lawyer, known as one of the strongest defenders of Berber rights in Morocco, said that although the government’s recent reactions seem regressive, they are part of the nation’s societal transformation process.
“The government is trying to dominate,” said Adghirni. “They are defending themselves. They feel the wind of change. All of this is normal for me – like a complex chemistry that activates as different elements come into contact. Things are moving.”
CDN concluded their story by saying that lawyer Adghirni believes that Morocco cannot survive and develop economically – and democratically – without national diversity.
“We can’t be free without Christians,” Adghirni said. “The existence of Christians among us is the proof of liberty.”
For more information, go to www.compassdirect.org"
"Morocco (MNN) ― While conversion from Islam is not a criminal offense in Morocco, new believers have endured social ostracism.
The 1992 constitution guarantees freedom of religion for all, but it designates Islam as the state religion. Missionary work is not allowed, but there are foreign workers in other roles seeking to share their faith.
According to Voice of the Martyrs Canada, any criticism of Islam is banned under the Penal Code and is punishable with up to five years in prison. Publications that could "threaten the fundamental institutional policies or religion of the kingdom" can also be banned.
Currently in North Africa, a team from IN Network is working to expand the correspondence course both in terms of numbers enrolled in the course and the Arabic countries into which it is sent. They are also concentrating more on church planting. Nationals are joining the ministry to handle this task.
Retreats are planned to gather believers together so they will have a chance to meet other Christians and have an encouraging time of fellowship and teaching.
IN Network also reports the Lord has opened another door for evangelism in Casablanca, the biggest city in Morocco. Plans are on track to open an evangelical center in 2009.
Pray for the right person who will take responsibility of the center as a worker of the Gospel. Pray, too, for those who are seeking Christ, that they will have the freedom to come to faith in Him without fear of punishment or harassment.
"... officially the Kingdom of Morocco (Arabic: المملكة المغربية), is a country located in North Africa with a population of nearly 34 million and an area just under 447,000 km2. The capital is Rabat, and the largest city is Casablanca. It has a coast on the Atlantic Ocean that reaches past the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea. Morocco has international borders with Algeria to the east, Spain to the north (a water border through the Strait and land borders with two small Spanish autonomous cities, Ceuta and Melilla), and Mauritania to the south via its Western Saharan territories.
Morocco is the only country in Africa that is not currently a member of the African Union. However, it is a member of the Arab League, Arab Maghreb Union, Francophonie, Organization of the Islamic Conference, Mediterranean Dialogue group, and Group of 77. It is also a major non-NATO ally of the United States."
"Morocco (the full Arabic name is Al Mamlakah al Maghribiyah which translates into "The Western Kingdom" ) is located on the North West coast of Africa and has ports in the North Atlantic Ocean as well as the Mediterranean Sea. It the third most populous Arab country. Morocco shares the largest part of its border with Algeria to the East and Western Sarah to the South. Morocco is divided into sixteen regions. Each region is further divided into provinces and prefectures. The capital of Morocco is Rabat and its largest city is Casablanca. The national currency is the Moroccan Dirham. "