Morocco Propaganda Keeping Anti-Christian Zeal Alive
Washington, D.C. (October 13, 2010) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that the Moroccan media continues to publish false accusations against foreign Christians in an effort to perpetuate Islamic animosity toward Christians in the country. This has contributed to the expulsions of more than 100 foreigners.
News outlets continue to keep foreign expulsions at the forefront of Moroccan media despite the fact that there have been no known foreign deportations from the country in months. For instance, Al Massae, a leading Moroccan newspaper, on September 17th reported that two Christian foreigners were deported from Morocco. ICC recently discovered that the foreigners were actually deported from Morocco in July and their deportation process began almost six months prior to the newspaper’s report.
“The media is lying to the Moroccan people,” expressed a Moroccan pastor who knew the expelled Christians. Among his grievances, the pastor also stated that the photograph published with the article was actually taken of someone who had no relation to the Christians identified in the article. The photograph was used to implicate the foreigners in the baptisms of Moroccans, a serious offence in the eyes of many Moroccans and one that the Moroccan government can use to justify the foreigners’ expulsion.
In addition, the article accused the foreigners of earning 600,000 Moroccan dirhams (equivalent to more than 73,000 U.S. dollars) from French and U.S. church funding which enabled them to buy a “luxury villa” in Kenitra. However, in reality the two foreigners were merely renting a home at 3,500 dirhams (426 dollars) per month.
Aidan Clay, ICC Regional Manager for the Middle East, said, “Since the expulsion of foreigners began in March, the Moroccan media has vilified Christian foreign activity within the country. Most foreigners in Morocco are there to conduct business, teach, or assist the neglected needs of the Moroccan people, such as caring for orphans. Yet, Moroccan media continues to portray a false image of foreign activity to the Moroccan people. Anti-Christian propaganda, like anti-Muslim or anti-Semitic propaganda, is of no benefit to anyone but only keeps religious hatred alive.”
For interviews, contact Aidan Clay, Regional Manager for the Middle East: firstname.lastname@example.org