During the beginning of November, it was reported that two female minors were arrested after a photo of them kissing was handed over to the police.
The two girls from Morocco, aged 16 and 17, were hugging and kissing when one of the girls cousins took a photo. The photo was handed over to one of the girls mothers, in which the mother handed the photo over to the police.
The two girls were immediately arrested and held in an adult prison, in Marrakesh, Morocco, for approximately three days. The two girls can potentially face up to 6 months to 3 years for their crime: an act of homosexuality.
Article 489 of the Moroccan penal code, permits the girls to be charged with “licentious or unnatural acts with an individual of the same sex.”
“We call out the feminist’s movement, humans rights associations and the Moroccan lawyers to end the series of arrests of Moroccan Men and Women face on daily basis and the injustice we are living in.”– L’Union Feministe Libre, an organisation in Rabat Morocco.
This case has sparked outrage and has caught the attention of those on social media, with the hashtag #freethegirls spreading all over Twitter.
The Humans Rights Watch addressed this case, calling out Morocca in attempts that they can revoke its law criminalising consensual conduct between same-sex partners.
Larbi Elhabbache, Vice President of the Marrkesh chapter of the Moroccan Association of Human Rights, addressed the subject regarding the acceptance of homosexuality in Morocco;
“Its difficult and will take time. We are not strong enough to force the country to change laws.”
During an interview with the Washington Post, Elhabbache announced that girls are scheduled to be tried in court on November 27th.