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Jobless protesters set themselves alight in Morocco

Jobless protesters set themselves alight in Morocco
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Five unemployed Moroccan men have set themselves on fire in the capital Rabat after demonstrating against a lack of jobs, especially for university graduates.

In videos posted online, the men can clearly be seen dousing themselves in petrol after police prevented them from receiving food from supporters.

The men had been occupying part of the Education Ministry for two weeks.

At least two of the men can be seen running away into the crowd, shrouded in flames.

Although two only had their clothing singed, the other three were taken to hospital. Two were transferred to a burns unit in Casablanca where they are in a serious condition.

Self-immolation has become a tactic of protest in the Arab world over the past year.

The Moroccan protest has echoes of the event seen as a catalyst for the Arab spring uprising, when a Tunisian market stall holder set himself alight.

The men were part of the ‘unemployed graduates’ movement. Five million graduates are said to be out of work – an official rate of 16 per cent.

Demonstrations are often broken up by police.