Morocco

Scandinavian hikers murder trial to begin

In Morocco, the trials are due to begin of 24 people accused of involvement in the murder of two Scandinavian hikers last December.

The bodies of Louisa Vesterager Jespersen from Denmark, and Maren Ueland from Norway, were found near a popular tourist spot in the Atlas mountains.

Both had been beheaded.

Three main defendants - who claimed allegiance to the Islamic State group - could face the death penalty, although Morocco has had a moratorium on executions since 1993.

A video showing the beheading of one of the women was shared widely on social media by IS supporters.

The killings shocked the north African country. Hundreds of people attended vigils in December to mark the murders, like these people pictured outside the Danish Embassy in Rabat:

Moroccans pay tribute to murdered Danish Louisa Vesterager Jespersen and Norwegian Maren Ueland in Rabat, in front the Danish Embassy on 22 December 2018.
AFP
Moroccans pay tribute to murdered Danish Louisa Vesterager Jespersen and Norwegian Maren Ueland in Rabat, in front the Danish Embassy on 22 December 2018.
AFP
Moroccans pay tribute to murdered Danish Louisa Vesterager Jespersen and Norwegian Maren Ueland in Rabat, in front the Danish Embassy on 22 December 2018.
AFP
Rally driving across the Sahara with no GPS
The annual Rallye Aicha des Gazelles sees all-female teams competing in a race where the fastest doesn't always win.

Morocco sees rise in 'no men allowed' tours

Private women-only tours are becoming increasingly popular
Morocco is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Africa but is one of the worst when it comes to gender equality. 

The North African country has 3,888 qualified tour guides, of which only 163 are women. However a resurgence in female-only tours is allowing nomadic tribes and widows to break through gender barriers and increase their financial independence.

The BBC’s Catharina Moh took one of these tours to Morocco's famous Atlas Mountains and met some of the women benefiting from this new travel trend.