Rabat – Moroccans are in a dilemma.  Should they support the decision of the police to shoot criminals who threaten the safety of citizens in public places with bladed weapons? Or, should they instead call for  officials to apply rigid sentences against the criminals as a deterrent?Moroccans took to social media to express their opinions on the issue after police in Beni Mellal’s outskirts fatally shot a 20-year-old young man last week.The death of the 20-year-old man caused heated debate among social media users. Some of them view that “to stop criminality in Morocco; the police have to use their firearms in the line of duty against criminals in order to be a lesson to other delinquents.” Other users supported the officers right “to open fire on the aggressors on condition of paralyzing them, thereby supporting the view that they should be arrested and not killed.” Still other social media users categorically disagreed with allowing the police officers to shoot the criminals, saying that “the criminal should be legitimately sentenced and has the right to hire a lawyer to defend him,” adding that “the legal judiciary is under the control of the judge, not in the hand of the police officers.”All seemed to agree that unemployment and the failure of the Moroccan educational system are among the main reasons behind criminal behaviour in Moroccan society.Following an unprecedented increase in crime in many Moroccan cities, social media users launched a campaign with the slogan “Zero Grissage,” or in English, “Zero Assault,”  last July. The campaign acknowledged King Mohammed VI as the supreme authority in Morocco, imploring him to intervene to find resolutions to the phenomenon of criminal attacks and call for the security department to be more effective.Seeking to contextualize Moroccans’ plea to eradicate criminality, the Moroccan daily Al Massae, reported last August that the Directorate of National Security (DGSN) announced plans to re-train the officers’ in the use of their weapons, since they have not used them for a long time.Edited by Constance Connie