Moroccan Women Fight for Property Rights

By MICHELLE DUTRO

Letting her thin, metal door clatter closed behind her, Turia Darif left her home alone for the first time in 18 years. She cried the whole way to the courthouse, crushed with an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.

When her husband died, Darif was left with five children and no way to feed them. The family’s main source of income came from a coffee shop and two small convenience stores. The three shops had been rented by a man for many years, but after her Mr. Darif’s death, the tenant refused to pay rent.

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Moroccan Women Build Land Rights Movement

GlobalPost “Moroccan women build land rights movement
Stacy Wheeler, Scripps College July 18, 2012

RABAT, Morocco — When Rkia Bellot’s family sold their communal land in 2004, each of her eight brothers received a share of the proceeds. But Bellot, a single woman, got nothing.

That’s because Bellot’s family land was part of the 37 million acres in Morocco governed by the orf, or tribal law. When this type of family land is sold, the unmarried or widowed women in the family, collectively called the Soulaliyate, often become destitute.

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