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Moroccan King Orders Overhaul of Religious Education in bid to Counter Terrorism

JAFFA, Israel – Morocco’s King Mohammed VI on Saturday ordered his government to review religious education in the country, in an attempt to curtail the spread of terrorist groups like the Islamic State.

The government was instructed to “review religious education in state schools in a way that would highlight tolerance and moderation, following the spread of extremist religious culture,” the king said in a statement.

The review, which is part of a recently announced comprehensive education reform, is the initiative of the education and religious affairs ministers, and is supposed to apply to “state schools, private schools, and religious seminaries alike.”

“The reform is meant to highlight Sunni Islam’s values of tolerance, emphasize coexistence between different cultures, and portray Moroccan society as open to modernity and innovation,” the king’s statement said.

Abdel Ghani Said, an independent Moroccan journalist, told Breitbart Jerusalem that “the situation in Morocco is not as complex as it is in Libya, Tunisia, and even Egypt, but “we’re all witnessing a greater influence of radical ideologies, including IS’s, especially on younger people.”

“Therefore, the King hopes to make sure that religious studies will be part of the national effort to counter extremism rather than play into the hands of the radicals.”

Last week, a senior Arab intelligence officer told Breitbart Jerusalem that IS is stepping up its activity in North Africa as part of an effort to maintain its foothold in Libya.

He also said that the IS presence in Libya would allow the group to use the ravaged country as a launching pad for attacks against Europe, as well as destabilize Egypt. This, he said, may bear ramifications for the entire region.

Last month, the Arab newspaper Asharq al Awsat reported that the Libyan branches of IS, al-Qaeda, and the Muslim Brotherhood are considering a merger to fend off international efforts to impose a unity government there..

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