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02:53, 18 June 2018 Monday
Update: 04:26, 13 September 2017 Wednesday

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Moroccan opposition party alleges state interference
Moroccan opposition party alleges state interference

Opposition leader accuses Moroccan ‘state agencies’ of attempting to co-opt his party

World Bulletin / News Desk

The leader of Morocco’s opposition Istiqlal (Independence) Party, Hamid Chabat, has accused “state agencies” of interfering in the party's internal affairs.

“I’m not referring to official state institutions, but rather certain state agencies, including the Interior Ministry,” Chabat said at a Tuesday press conference held in capital Rabat.

Chabat accused “certain political parties and state organs”, which he did not name, of trying to infiltrate his party and influencing its leadership.

“If party members elect a candidate -- who has been co-opted by the state -- as party secretary-general, the Istiqlal Party will effectively become a state-run party,” he asserted.

The Moroccan government and Interior Ministry, for their part, have yet to comment on the allegations.

Chabat also used Tuesday’s press conference to reiterate his commitment to running for a second term as party secretary-general.

Morocco’s second largest opposition party, the Istiqlal Party is currently gearing up to hold its 17th party congress in March of next year amid rumors of internecine conflict between party leaders.

In 2016 parliamentary polls, the party -- which bills itself as conservative -- won 46 seats in the 395-member assembly, coming in third behind the Justice & Development Party and the Authenticity & Modernity Party.

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