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Thousands protest against Morocco's pension reforms

Thousands protest against Morocco's pension reforms

Morocco

Thousands of Moroccans demonstrated Sunday in Rabat against a new law on raising the legal age of retirement for civil servants.

A majority of Morocco’s members of Parliament had on Wednesday voted in favour of a series of draft laws on the pension system that will include a rise in the age of retirement from 60 to 63 years triggering the protests.

Carrying signs with the inscription “Freedom, Dignity and Social Justice”, the demonstrators gathered in the center of the capital following a call made by the “National Coordination against the pension reform,” which brings together civil society unions and members before taking their protests outside Parliament.

Besides the gradual increase to 63 which will be the legal age of retirement from 2017, the law provides for increasing the participation of public employees.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane acknowledged the “difficult” provisions of the new law, which he said was passed in the interests of Moroccans.

In early January, the unions had campaigned against the bill and accused the government of “conspiring against Moroccan workers” and “condoning corruption”.