Search

 

Cablegate: Ministry of Interior's Secret Plan for Morocco's

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHRB #1374/01 2011445
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 201445Z JUL 06
FM AMEMBASSY RABAT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4282
INFO RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS 4086
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 3022
RUEHNK/AMEMBASSY NOUAKCHOTT 3239
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 4293
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS 8972
RUEHCL/AMCONSUL CASABLANCA 1910

UNCLAS RABAT 001374

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR NEA/MAG, NEA/PI

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PINR MO
SUBJECT: MINISTRY OF INTERIOR'S SECRET PLAN FOR MOROCCO'S
2007 LEGISLATIVE ELECTIONS


1. (U) Summary: French language weekly, Le Journal
Hebdomaire (July 15), reported on the Moroccan Ministry of
Interior (MOI)'s projections on the 2007 legislative
elections. The projections confirmed the preeminence of the
Islamist Party of Justice and Development (PJD), the strong
position of the Socialist Union of Popular Forces (USFP) and
Istiqlal and also mentioned possible formations of leftist
parties to balance Islamist power. According to Le Journal,
the Government of Morocco (GOM) seeks a balance between
powers that will encourage the democratization of
institutions but not challenge the Monarchy's authority. It
describes PJD difficulties in rural areas and the isolation
of the USFP on the issue of the electoral code reform. Le
Journal criticized the GOM for releasing a plan to "drive the
elections" rather than an objective description of the
current political configuration. End Summary.

------------------------------------------
THE GOM IN THE 2007 LEGISLATIVE ELECTIONS
------------------------------------------

2. (U) The Ministry of the Interior (MOI) conducted polling
and simulations in order to gauge where parties stand in the
current political configuration. The MOI findings estimated
that the PJD could win between 60 and 70 seats; USFP could
win approximately 50 seats; Istiqlal approximately 40 seats;
and the Popular Movement Party (UMP) and National Rally of
Independents (RNI) could win between 30 and 40 seats each.
The Party of Progress and Socialism (PPS) could increase its
position to a little over 20 seats.

3. (U) Le Journal said that the 2002 legislative elections
failed to present a clear majority and forced the King to
nominate a politically independent prime minister. The
weekly asserted that, with a changed political landscape, the
King intends to nominate a partisan prime minister in 2007
and that the MOI's polling and simulations are laying the
groundwork for this decision. An unnamed official of the MOI
said it was not intervening in the elections but merely
conducting a study in order to predict the results; however,
Le Journal criticized the MOI for attempting to "orient" the
results of the elections.

4. (U) According to the report, the GOM seeks to avoid the
massive victory of one party or the formation of a
homogeneous coalition that would not need the Palace's
support and thereby weaken its authority. The GOM also seeks
a party committed to democratization without questioning the
Monarchy. The GOM's main goal is to create a balance between
the parties which will last beyond the 2007 elections.

----------
ISLAMISTS
----------

5. (U) The GOM's strategy regarding the Islamists and the
PJD is to maintain the 2002 electoral lists and distribution
of constituencies. The report notes that the votes of
Moroccan residents abroad will continue to be discarded so as
to limit Islamists' power. Le Journal claims that the PJD
would have trouble gaining votes in rural areas if the
electoral code is passed but also acknowledges that the 14
parties unfavorable to the code might then seek support from
the PJD. The MOI report maintained that the best defense
against conservative Islam is an active opposition with
innovative ideas presented by credible people. The "Left,"
according to Le Journal, holds the best keys for
institutional democratization but could also threaten the
Palace's authority.


---------
THE LEFT
---------

6. (U) Le Journal claims that the proposed electoral code
reform will most likely be amended in order to allow for the
participation of the Unified Socialist Party (PSU), whose
absence in the elections would discredit the code. The MOI
official was allegedly vague regarding questions about the
PSU but did acknowledge that the progressive party would win
seats by associating itself with other parties from the
radical Left. The MOI predicts the institutionalization of
the PSU and other parties of the Moroccan Left into a united

opposition integrated into Parliament after 2007, according
to Le Journal.

7. (U) This united Left also depends on whether the USFP
will cooperate or pursue "hegemonic ambitions." It predicted
that the USFP under its current Secretary General, Mohamed
Elyazghi, is unlikely to form a coalition with the PSU or
other parties from the Left. Le Journal wrote that the MOI
is not pleased with the isolation of the USFP regarding its
support for the electoral code reform unanimously contested
by other parties. Le Journal suggested the GOM's interest in
the changes in the Left was a way to appease critics and to
find a counterbalance to Islamist parties.

8. (U) The MOI report also recognized the increasing
importance of the PPS. It acknowledged the importance of
political bureau member Nabil Benabdallah, the Minister of
Communication and government spokesperson, who could demand
constitutional reforms from friends if the PPS has electoral
difficulties similar to those of the PSU.

9. (U) According to Le Journal, a PPS with 20 to 25 seats in
the future Chamber of Representatives would be ideal for the
MOI as it would calm USFP demands for constitutional reforms.
The MOI also hopes the PSU would have around 14 deputies so
that it would be coherent enough to form an active opposition
in Parliament and balance the PJD discourse but small enough
so that its reformist discourse would resonate minimally. Le
Journal reported that there has been recent communication
between the MOI and certain PSU leaders. The Minister
Delegate to the Ministry of the Interior, Fouad Ali El Himma,
made it known that he expected increased PSU participation in
Parliament, which he claimed would benefit political
institutions in Morocco.

******************************************
Visit Embassy Rabat's Classified Website;
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/nea/rabat
******************************************

RILEY

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

OECD: COVID-19 Crisis Puts Migration And Progress On Integration At Risk, Says

Watch the live webcast of the press conference Migration flows have increased over the past decade and some progress has been made to improve the integration of immigrants in the host countries. But some of these gains may be erased by the COVID-19 pandemic ... More>>


Pacific Media Watch: How Pacific Environmental Defenders Are Coping With The Covid Pandemic

SPECIAL REPORT: By Sri Krishnamurthi of Pacific Media Watch Pacific Climate Warriors - creative action to trigger better responses to climate crisis. Image: ... More>>

Reporters Without Borders: Julian Assange’s Extradition Hearing Marred By Barriers To Open Justice

After monitoring four weeks of evidence in the US extradition proceedings against Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) reiterates concern regarding the targeting of Assange for his contributions to journalism, and calls ... More>>

OHCHR: Stranded Migrants Need Safe And Dignified Return – UN Migrant Workers Committee

The UN Committee on Migrant Workers has today called on governments to take immediate action to address the inhumane conditions of migrant workers who are stranded in detention camps and ensure they can have an orderly, safe and dignified return to ... More>>