Seventy Moroccans threaten suicide in jobs protest

January 20, 2012 22:58

RABAT - About 70 jobless Moroccans threatened to commit "collective suicide" on Friday by trying to march into phosphate quarries riddled with explosives unless they were employed by state phosphate monopoly OCP, local officials said.

Police forcefully intervened to break up the protest near the southern city of Benguerir and arrested six on suspicion of instigating it, the officials said. No further details were immediately available.

The incident was the latest in a series of eye-catching protests. On Wednesday, four unemployed graduates set fire to themselves with petrol in the heart of the capital Rabat, echoing the act of the Tunisian vegetable vendor who one year ago set off the "Arab Spring" revolts.

The graduates suffered burns but survived the incident during a protest to press authorities to give them and fellow graduates public sector jobs, Moroccan media said.

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