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Moroccans Vote On Reforms

A man casts his vote at a polling station in Sale.
Moroccans go to the polls today to vote on a series of constitutional amendments and reforms.

The proposals, put forward by King Mohammed VI, would give the prime minister and parliament more power. They also would reinforce the independence of the judiciary, boost efforts to tackle corruption, guarantee freedom of expression and gender rights, and make Berber an official language.

The king is widely expected to win the vote, though low turnout could spark demands for bolder changes.

The vote -- the first constitutional referendum under the king's 12-year rule -- comes in response to protests inspired by the Arab uprisings that ousted leaders in Tunisia and Egypt.

King Mohammed, 47, acceded to the throne in 1999 following the death of his father Hassan II, and now heads the Arab world's longest-serving dynasty.

compiled from agency reports