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In a statement, Elphicke said: "I have been doing all I can to help free Mr. I am deeply concerned about his safety and it is clear that if you visit Morocco you are at serious risk of facing trumped up charges for medieval crimes.The message is clear -- Morocco is not safe for British tourists.

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Hijabs on women, beards on men, no alcohol, no mingling between men and women -- different states may have different variations, but these organizations are pervasive wherever they are.

As a Westerner, or even if you are from the Far East, you will stick out like a sore thumb regardless, and you will be, if not watched directly, "paid attention to." As is anybody you are with.

In Saudi Arabia, it is Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice; Afghanistan has the similarly-named Ministry for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice.

Most often, they are simply called "mutaween." Whatever the name, they are the morality-enforcing religious police, responsible for upholding the religious tenets of Islam.

But how did they even know those photos were there to begin with? So when he showed on the sidewalk with another guy (whose age difference would make even New Yorkers do a double-take), it wasn't hard for the police to put two and two together even if nothing was "going on." In they swooped.

After that very long set-up, I should say that this article is not about the Moroccan legal system, or even its draconian views on same-sex relationships -- those are their own articles.

Last September, Ray Cole, a 69-year-old man from the UK, was arrested while on vacation in Marrakech and served a jail term of four months.

During his internment, he was fed boiled vegetables once a day and slept on a concrete floor of a prison dormitory designed for 44 but was housing 60.

Instead of instituting an organization to do it, the populace itself is just encouraged to keep tabs on you, North Korea-style.

Even progressive countries have their hurdles: a gay man in Japan, Taiwan, or Thailand may still marry a woman simply because of social pressure to continue the family line, and leave you out in the cold or worse, in permanent second place.

No arrests in a bathhouse or hammam or even a raid on an underground party. He had gone to Morocco to meet Jamal Jam Wald Nass, 20, whom he begun a relationship online several months previously.

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