UN: Ambassador Hilale Highlights Moroccan Kings's Attachment to Values ​​of Coexistence and Fight against Hate Speech

Morocco's permanent representative to the UN, ambassador Omar Hilale, highlighted, Tuesday in New York, Morocco's firm and permanent attachment, under the far-sighted leadership of King Mohammed VI, to the values ​​of coexistence and to the fight against hate speech and intolerance.

Hilale was speaking at a high-level event co-organized by the Permanent Mission of Morocco to the United Nations and the UN Office for the Prevention of Genocide on the occasion of the 3rd International Day for Countering Hate Speech under the theme "Investing in the Power of Youth on Countering and addressing Hate Speech”. This Day, celebrated on June 18, was proclaimed by the UN in July 2021 at Morocco's initiative.

During this event, the ambassador stated that King Mohammed VI has given His High Instructions to place the Moroccan youth at the heart of any integrated development strategy, by adopting policies that focus on the principles of equal opportunities, quality education, good citizenship, intellectual and professional empowerment.

The aim is to ensure that Moroccan youngsters are protected against any marginal risky behavior and empowered to act as vectors of change in the society, he said, adding that the involvement of the Moroccan youth in combating and reducing the rhetorics of extremism and hatred in society has proven to be very useful in combating all forms of social exclusion, hence the relevance of the Moroccan Integrated National Youth Strategy (2015-2030).

He further affirmed that Morocco attaches great importance to the indispensable role of civil society and youth associations, hence the establishment, in July 2011, of the Consultative Council for Youth and Associative Action. 

“To date, Morocco has around 50,000 associations present throughout the national territory. These associations operate in several areas covering education, including social inclusion, health, sport, political leadership, the defense of human rights and youth development”, he indicated, saying that the work of these associations helps shield the Moroccan youth from the scourge of hate speech and empower them as actors of change. 

Hilale further stated that His Majesty the King reiterated the importance of youth inclusion in his Royal Speech delivered during the opening ceremony of the Ninth United Nations Alliance of Civilisations Global Forum, held in Fez in November 2022, when the Sovereign underlined that: ‘‘Dialogue is inter-generational, meaning that it should involve young people and be concerned with the present as well as the future. Young people do not only represent the generations we must shield form the scourge of war and hate speech; they are the ones already making peace.’’

Other speakers at this event praised the role and leadership of the Kingdom in the fight against hate speech, in all its forms, including in the digital space. They also indicated that this international Day serves as a reminder of the importance of standing together against hate speech and mobilizing the efforts of all components of society, including young people, to overcome this scourge.

The holding of this high-level event recognizes the role of Morocco, under the far-sighted leadership of His Majesty the King, as a regional and international leader in the fight against hate speech. It is also a recognition of the actions that the Kingdom continues to undertake to promote the virtues of coexistence, living together and dialogue in the world. 

The event was marked by a message from UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. In this message, the senior UN official notably indicated that young people are often the most affected by hate speech, particularly online, believing that these young people must be part of the solution. “Governments, local authorities, religious, business and community leaders have a duty to invest in measures to promote tolerance, diversity and inclusion, and to combat hate speech in all its forms”, he recommended.

For his part, the President of the UN General Assembly, Dennis Francis insisted in his pre-recorded message on the need to reflect the values ​​of harmony, tolerance, understanding and respect which are fundamental for healthy societies. 

"This is how we must involve the 1.2 billion people on the planet. Young people, who represent 16% of the world's population, are the most connected online. They are often the first to be exposed to hatred online, as targets, victims or spectators, and they have an essential rule to play as actors of positive change,'' he said.

Several ambassadors and diplomats accredited to the UN participated in this event which as marked by the interventions of young people and a number of UN officials, namely the UN Under-Secretary-General for Youth Affairs, the Special Adviser on rights of children at UNICEF, the Special Adviser of the Office on the issue of violence against children, the Representatives of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

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