January 24, 2002 - Updated on January 20, 2016

A British journalist prohibited from entering the country

In a letter addressed to Interior minister Driss Jettou, Reporters sans Frontières (Reporters Without Borders - RSF) protested at a travel ban on British journalist Nicolas Pelham, former correspondent for the BBC in Morocco. "This step is completely unjustified, particularly since the Minister of Communication, Mohammed Achaari, told the journalist that he could visit Morocco whenever he wanted", said Robert Ménard, RSF General Secretary. "We want explanation about this change of attitude", he added. According to the information collected by RSF, Nicolas Pelham, a freelance British journalist who travelled to Morocco to produce a report on emigration for the BBC, was expelled from the kingdom on 23 January. When he arrived at the Tangiers airport late on 22 January, the journalist was told that he was "prohibited from entering the country", without further explanation. Nicolas Pelham was taken to administrative headquarters in Tangiers where he spent the night. In the morning, he was put on a plane to Casablanca from where he was put on a flight to London via Madrid. In June 1999, the journalist, then correspondent for the BBC in Rabat, was driven to border post of the Spanish enclave of Ceuta, north of Morocco. The authorities relented the following day.