March 28, 2023

The most important recommendations from a recent roundtable entitled “Climate Change and Human Security: The Case of Northern Morocco” call for the need to “integrate human rights into public environmental laws and policies”, linking environmental law and civil society support to Morocco in environmental policy development processes. Defending their cases before completing their work, calling for “human rights organizations and environmentalists to address environmental violations” and warning that climate change is “an unconventional security threat that violates the rights of individuals and groups.”

Organized by the Northern Observatory for Human Rights in partnership with the Forum for Social Organizations and Strategies for Change and the Forum for Science and Policy Studies, this event placed him in the context of the growth and frequency of various phenomena caused by climate change. (forest fires and drought) in recent years, especially in the northern parts of the Kingdom; According to an overview paper reviewed by Hespress, this has affected the environment as well as people through “high levels of internal migration and shrinking agricultural land; In addition to the high suicide rate and dangerously low water levels in the dams.”

In two scientific sessions, the participants came to the conclusion that what has happened in recent years and what is currently happening in ecosystems poses a direct threat to a number of rights; Providers: “Right to life, right to safe water and sanitation, right to food, right to development”; They also criticized the lack of an environmental dimension in public policies and programs, especially among elected institutions, due to what they called “the absence and weakness of the legal arsenal, since it does not oblige the political actor, especially the soil, to integrate an environmental approach into public policy” .

Accordingly, the participants of the discussion table did not fail to present a package of recommendations to the custodians of state bodies, as well as officials and elected officials of the territorial communities most threatened by climate change; In particular, “the need to make more efforts at the legislative level to force political decision makers to include the environmental dimension in public policies and development programs at the local, regional and national levels; Given the particularities of Morocco, which is in a fragile field due to pressure on waterways and an increase in forest fires,” said Mohamed Benaissa, head of the Northern Observatory for Human Rights.

In a statement to electronic newspaper Hespress, Ben Issa linked “ongoing climate change and human rights to their overarching environmental dimensions”, stressing that “climate change is a form of non-traditional security threats or persistent threats” such as migration and extremism. , and warned that it “profoundly affects the lives of individuals as well as groups and nations.”

“These are threats that violate a number of direct rights enshrined in international instruments and human rights covenants, or violate a number of other rights,” the same speaker added, listing “the right to life, the right to water, the right to adequate food, the right to health and the right to food”. Housing and the right to development.

The same civilian actor drew the attention of politicians to the “impacts caused by climate change, caused by population displacement, forced migration and armed conflict”, highlighting the adoption by the international community of a number of international and regional agreements in order to preserve the environment and reduce gas emissions; Recalling in this regard the recent adoption by the United Nations of a new right “the right to live in a clean, healthy and sustainable environment”.

The discussion sessions also ended with recommendations on “the need to educate environmental media professionals, guided by the outstanding experience that Morocco knew at the beginning of the third millennium”, noting that gender should be integrated, and taken into account “in its broad concept, transcending women.” And from men to the poor and disabled.”

The interventions under the above activities also provided a number of examples of the relationship of climate change to human security and its threat to human rights, as well as its impact on nature and people, such as the phenomenon of mass forced migration known to a group of rural areas of Chefchaouen towards the cities of Tangier and Tetouan from -for droughts, or the phenomenon of the decline of nomads in the regions of Figuig and Bouarfa… a warning that the consequences of forced migration should not be reduced to “the emergence of a group of other social phenomena associated with climate change, such as dropouts from school, suicides, crime and delinquency, as well as underage marriages.

It is noteworthy that the work of the round table brought together participants from different backgrounds and specializations, including Mr. Mohamed El Bakkali, a politician and civic leader in the north, Dr. Omar Belmahdi, a specialist in biotechnology and applied microbiology, and Mostafa El Abbasi, member of the Regional Committee for Human Rights in the Tangier-Tetouan-El Hoceima region; and About academic researchers Abd Rabbo Al-Bakhsh and Abd Al-Salam Al-Osmani.

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