Moroccan politician uses personal militia to attack estranged wife

A man attacking Youssef Tazi’s wife (name withheld).
 
 
Amateur footage shows a villa in a residential neighbourhood in Rabat being attacked by about a hundred men armed with sticks and shovels. This was the rather unusual attempt of a former member of Morocco’s parliament to resolve a conflict with his wife.
 
Youssef Tazi and his wife are getting a divorce. Accordingly, he is not allowed to live in their home until the court makes a finding. But the politician was not ready to relinquish the house, which legally belongs to a company whose shareholders are the couple and their children. In order to get back what he perceived to be his property, the estranged husband called on his henchmen to take over the villa and beat up its residents.
 
Photos of the attack.
 
Several arrests were made following the incident, which occurred on April 5, 2013. A police investigation is ongoing.
 
Tazi is a former member of parliament. In early 2013, he was given a suspended two-year sentence for misappropriating public funds.
Contributors

“Some of the attackers had covered their faces”

Amine Fassi is Youssef Tazi’s brother-in-law. He filmed the attack on the house.
 
My sister received an anonymous phone call informing her that her husband had sent a group of men to kick her out of the house. She asked me to come film the attack as proof for the police of the harassment she has suffered since the start of the divorce proceedings several months ago. She also called a bailiff to witness the event.
 
Youssef Tazi arrived with a cohort of around a hundred armed men. They came in cars and trucks, armed with shovels and sticks. Some had even covered their faces.
 
"My brother-in-law told them that a group of people had been squatting his house"
 
Some of the attackers broke down the front door while others climbed over the house walls. My sister and my parents, as well as three guards and a family friend, tried to defend themselves, as you can see in the video. My sister and our friend were slightly injured. This all lasted about 20 minutes, and then the attackers ran off. But the guards managed to catch a couple of them, who were handed over to the police.
 
After the police questioned them, we learned that about 30 or so of these men were laborers that my brother-in-law had been employing for a couple years on his land. The remainder are thugs that he recruited in the “Ataakadom” neighborhood, a low-income neighborhood well-known for being a good place to recruit day laborers. Youssef Tazi told the men that a group of people had been squatting his house and that he needed men to kick them out. The laborers thus were not expecting that we would call the police. They were quite frightened.
 
Post written with FRANCE 24 journalist Sarra Grira (@SarraGrira).

Comments

Reply to comment | The Observers

There's certainly a great deal to learn about this issue. I really like all the points you have made.

not unusual for moroccan

not unusual for moroccan society, unfortunately!

violence, harassment, threats, blackmail.

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