Morocco: King's Speech Tweeted

This post is part of our special coverage Morocco Protests 2011.

Inspired by Tunisia and Egypt, Moroccan youth have been taking to the streets since February 20, asking for a reform of the constitution which currently provides the king with absolute powers. On Wednesday, King Mohammed VI gave his first address to the nation since the beginning of pro-democracy protests. Without referring explicitly to the protests, he promised “a comprehensive reform of the constitution” and a referendum on an “advanced regionalization,” aiming at providing regions with greater autonomy from the central authority of the government –a reform that he says would guaranty the separation of powers and strengthen the role of an elected Prime Minister and Parliament.

The speech was closely followed on Twitter under the hashtag #khitab, which translates to speech in Arabic. Here are speech minutes and first reactions:

@citizenkayen: renforcement du role de la femme #khitab

[King speaks of] “strengthening the role of women”

@Lamialaz: Discours du Roi Mohamed VI : Régionalisation et Constitution. #khitab

The king's speech in short: regionalization and constitution.

@Takhouar: Machrou3iyat tatalou3at référence au #feb20 #khitab

“The legitimacy of the aspirations” in the king's speech is a reference to the #Feb20 (February 20
pro-democracy movement).

The king then says he was willing to engage in a process that would lead to a comprehensive reform of the constitution, based on 7 principles:

@mcherifi: #khitab RT @citizenkayen: refonte constitutionel complete: 1 identite nation auotur amazighia

A comprehensive reform of the constitution [the king says] based on first, the recognition of Amazigh (Berber) as part of the national identity.

@crowd42: #khitab : séparation des pouvoirs

[The king pledges] the separation of powers.

@Hyperconnard: #khitab un nouveau gouvernement issu du parlement et 1er ministre issu uniquement du parti vainqueur

[The king says] the new government will result from the parliament and the Prime Minister from the party that wins the elections.

@citizenkayen: renforcer le role des partis et loposition aprlement et la soc civile #khitab

[The king wants to] strengthen the role of political parties, the opposition, the parliament and the civil society

@Hyperconnard: #khitab lajnat mouraja3at dosstor.

[the king will create] a commission to amend the current constitution.

@RedaBlog: et nous voilà, une autre commission… #khitab

Here we go again, another commission.

@Takhouar: ASSEMBLEE CONSTITUTIONNELLE (non élue) présidée par Abdeltif Mennouni #khitab

Creation of a constitutional assembly (unelected) presided over by Abdeltif Mennouni.

@mounirbensalah: #khitab 1 projet de const avant juin 2011

[The king promises] a new draft constitution before June 2011.

First reactions were mostly positive:

@DrSwEeToO: hadshi ki beshar bel kheir #Khitab

This bodes well.

@meryemefaris: Super! #khitab


@didacasa: #khitab so prouuuud !

@: 3acha lmalik #khitab du siecle

Long live the king. This is the speech of the century!

@mounirbensalah: #khitab #feb20 a gagne

The #Feb20 (pro-democracy movement) has won!

@YassBerraoui: HISTORIQUE #khitab


@ManusMacManus: It sounds like the British electoral system #Maroc #Feb20 #Khitab

Some however are calling for caution:

@Hyperconnard: #khitab un discours assez vague. Des déclarations d'intention. De très belles intentions.

Pretty vague speech. Statement of intent. But good intentions.

@Hyperconnard: #khitab le #feb20 mais aussi les soulèvements arabes ont servi a quelquechose au maroc

The pro-democracy movement (#Feb20) and the Arab uprisings have been useful in Morocco.

@abmoul: Si j'ai compris, la monarchie garde la main haute sur le processus de révision constitutionnelle. #khitab

If I understand correctly, the monarchy retains the upper hand in the revision process
of the constitution.

@: le discours du Roi ne garantit rien. La vigilance est plus que jamais de mise.

King's speech does not guarantee anything. Vigilance is more necessary than ever.

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This post is part of our special coverage Morocco Protests 2011.

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