Thousands of people have taken the streets across Morocco's northern Rif region for an eighth night demanding the release of a prominent protest movement leader.
While some anger in the Al Hoceima protests has been directed at "Makhzen" - the royal governing establishment, the demonstrations in northern Morocco, as in pro-democracies rallies in 2011, have not been directed at King Mohammed VI. "The doors to dialogue remain open with civil society," government spokesman Mustafa el-Khalfi was quoted as saying by the official MAP news agency.
Celeste Hicks, a freelance journalist reporting from Casablanca, told Al Jazeera that the protests stemmed from the death of Mouhcine Fikri, a 31-year-old who was crushed in a rubbish truck in October as he protested against the seizure of swordfish caught out of season.
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