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The infamous "jokes" issue of Nichane that lead to its 2006 ban

Nichane (meaning Direct in Moroccan Arabic and Berber:نيشان) (formerly Aljareeda Alokhra) was a Moroccan weekly arabophone and darijophone (in Moroccan Arabic) magazine.

History and profile[edit]

Nichane was a sister publication of the French-language Tel Quel magazine.[1] Nichane was published from September 2006 to October 2010. Its editor-in-chief was Driss Ksikes.


On 20 December 2006, Moroccan Prime Minister Driss Jettou issued a statement prohibiting thus the diffusion and distribution of Nichane.[2] This prohibition came as a result of the publishing of "provocative jokes" related to religion, and the late King of Morocco, Hassan II.

Driss Ksikes and another journalist, Sanaa al-Aji, were prosecuted for "defaming Islam and damaging morality" and sentenced to fines of 80,000 dirhams each and three-year suspended sentences. Additionally, the magazine was banned for two months.[3] Both journalists defended their article.[4]

In December 2009, police destroyed 100,000 copies of the magazine after it printed an unauthorized opinion poll of Moroccan King Mohammed VI.[1][5]

In October 2010, publisher Ahmed Benchemsi announced the closure of the magazine, citing an advertiser boycott by royally-owned ONA/SNI holding group.[6]


  1. ^ a b "Media Sustainability Index 2009". Irex. Retrieved 9 September 2014. 
  2. ^ The Prime Minister prohibits the weekly magazine “Nichane”
  3. ^ "Moroccan court convicts Nichane journalists, shutters publication". Committee to Protect Journalists. 17 January 2007. Retrieved 6 October 2010. 
  4. ^ Hamilton, Richard (8 January 2007). "Morocco reporters defend article". BBC News. Retrieved 14 January 2007. 
  5. ^ "Magazines Seized Over Royal Opinion Survey". France24. 8 March 2009. Retrieved 3 October 2010. 
  6. ^ Fisher, Max (1 October 2010). "Morocco's Largest Arabic Newsweekly to Fold Under State Pressure". The Atlantic. Retrieved 3 October 2010. 

External links[edit]