The father of an 18-year-old Moroccan student who was sentenced to 18 months in jail for insulting the country's king is seeking a royal pardon on his son's behalf.
Yassine Belassal began his prison sentence for "breach of due respect to the king" on Monday. He has the opportunity to appeal the sentence on Wednesday.Belassal was asked by his teacher to write Morocco's motto, "God, country, king," on his classroom's blackboard in September.
Belassal substituted his allegiance to King Mohamed VI with "Barca," a reference to his favourite soccer team, Spanish squad FC Barcelona.
The switch of words angered his teacher and school director, who called the police and had the teenager arrested. He was later sentenced to 18 months in prison.
Morocco's media have heavily criticized Belassal's imprisonment.
The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information has also denounced the decision to sentence Belassal. More...