Interior and Islamic Affairs Ministries Hunt for Extremist Books in Moroccan Bookstores

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SHAFAQNA – Morocco World News : Commissions from both ministries have begun a campaign in bookstores around the kingdom to search out religious extremist books, especially those whose authors are preachers known for praising terrorism and radicalism, reported the daily Al Massae daily on December 4.

The Minister of the Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit, has sent a confidential letter to the territorial directorates to list bookstores specializing in selling extremist works and to note the titles of books of that glorify Shia Islam or contain extremist ideologies.

These measures seek to protect Moroccan youth from religious radicalism and to prevent them from falling into the criminal hands of terrorist organizations, said the daily.

The ministries have explained that these measures “in no way constitute any obstacle to freedom of thought and expression.”

However, there is no direct relationship between extremist religious ideology and Shia Islam, and some of the most well-known terrorist groups, including Daech and Al-Qaeda, purport to follow the Wahhabi movement of Sunni Islam.

In recent years Morocco has concentrated its efforts on the promotion of moderate Islam, in order to eliminate some of the root causes of terrorism and extremism.

This strategy has included developing curricula for imams, promoting scholarly research through the Mohammedan League of Ulema on the nation’s Islamic values, and engaging youth in religious and social issues.

The country has also launched the Mohammed VI Holy Quran radio and the Mohammed VI Institute for the Training of Imams (religious leaders), Morchidins and Morchidates (preachers), with the aim of promoting the values of moderation and tolerance preached by Islam.

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