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Morocco Week in Review 
August 15, 2020

Virtual Magazine of Morocco on the Web

The Moroccan villager who changed my life’s course

July 9, 2020 ٌ RPCV Morocco & HAF President Jason Ben Meir MARRAKECH, Morocco

Recently, I had a moment of self-reflection brought about by the passing of someone who made a difference in the trajectory of my life. Years ago, I lived in the home of Omar Himmi Ait Omrar in the village of Amsouzerte in the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco. Sharing stories about those two years (1993-1995) living in Omar’s home and what followed, those stories of life, may be meaningful to others.  (I am grateful to share with you my remembrances of the late Omar Himmi, of Morocco’s High Atlas. He recently passed away at the age of 103, and it is he without whom I might not have dedicated a professional life to the people’s development in the kingdom.)

In the early 1990s, getting to this very distant village, caught between the provinces of Ouarzazate, Taroudant, and Al Haouz, was difficult. Of the five valleys surrounding Toubkal mountain, the tallest peak in North Africa, only one is on its south side: the Tifnoute. What is special about that fact is that about half of the Toubkal National Park is the summer pasturelands for the Tifnoute people’s herds. Yet, until that time there had not been adequate communication between the park management and the Tifnoute community of 44 villages (about 12,000 people) because it is so remote that it takes 24 hours to get there due to having to circle around the Atlas Mountains in order to arrive, with the last 70 kilometers of which being unpaved paths. When, as Peace Corps Volunteers, we were assigned to the Toubkal park, we could choose to live anywhere among its valleys of villages, so when I heard that no one had gone to the Tifnoute, I said, “OK, I’ll do it, I’ll go.” I traveled in segments, and it took me three days to get there that winter in 1993.

When people arrive in the Tifnoute, they would always be sent to Omar Himmi. No one knew I was coming, and there I was planning to stay for two years. I remember that the first meal I ate was an omelet, after which I immediately felt tired and sick from the long, cold journey. I was ill for two weeks, unable to leave my room and having terrifying hallucinations, which I had never had in my life. I decided early to watch the menacing shapes in my mind like a spectator would a movie, and I even ended up missing them once they were gone. At night, I would feel Omar Himmi’s hand on my head because he was genuinely worried. He would make sure I had hot soup and also tangerines for Vitamin C, which thankfully were in season in Morocco.

After a few days, the local sheikh came to visit me, and I mustered enough energy to sit up, show my passport, and ask whether the people would be happy if an American lived among them for two years, to which he replied, “Yes.” That was all. But it became more complicated because the Caid did not feel the same way. At that time, community empowerment and participatory development were words that no one had heard of, and these ideas of organized change were not particularly trusted – and to think their implementation is now mandated in Morocco. That the Caid did not want an unexpected sojourner to live in the Tifnoute, yet that someone was sick and confined to bed (or rather the covered floor), presented a dilemma for Omar…….
More here: https://www.sdjewishworld.com/2020/07/09/the-moroccan-villager-who-changed-my-lifes-course/
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Peace Corps veteran relates adventures in memoir

July 24, 2020

Created by President John F. Kennedy in 1961, the Peace Corps is about to celebrate its 60th anniversary. More than 235,000 volunteers have served in 141 countries over the years. On of them is writer Richard Wallace of Ponchatoula. In his thoughtful new book, “The Couscous Chronicles – A Peace Corps Memoir,” Wallace tells what it was like for volunteers to live in a foreign land and handle challenging jobs.

Fresh out of college and packing his film production degree, he wanted to travel. In 1977, he joined the annual deployment of trainees to Morocco’s capital city of Rabat, learning French, some Arabic and the nuances of Islamic culture. His job post was as a member of a media team for the Ministry of Agriculture, producing training films and printed materials for farmers.

Sworn in as a Peace Corps volunteer, he was challenged to assimilate into the Moroccan way of life. Associations with his female roommate and co-worker, plus a steady parade of visitors, proved both entertaining and educational. Wallace’s memoir relates the adventures a bunch of ambitious, curious and mostly dedicated twenty-somethings would experience, living and working among a population so unlike their own. Trips to many small towns expanded his impressions of his adopted home. The sights, the banter, the flavors of Morocco are vividly captured during his excursions. Highlighting his account are favorite memories recalled by volunteers in his 1977 class, all cherished personal examinations and life lessons – unforgettable moments – cemented in their minds…….
Read the rest here: https://www.hammondstar.com/news/peace-corps-veteran-relates-adventures-in-memoir/article_8bc36c43-b370-5d29-b64f-ccc6d17730ba.html
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Three herb-based sauces bring lively flavor to your table

By Robin Mather Special to the Arizona Daily Star  Jul 28, 2020

I’ve been exploring herb-based sauces for the last couple of weeks and wanted to share three of my favorites with you. They aren’t Southwestern, but they are all made with ingredients we’re very familiar with here in the desert. They come from three parts of the world, but they share common ingredients — and I’ll bet you have everything for at least one of them on hand or close by. I find their similarities as fascinating as their differences — and love that each requires few special or hard-to-find ingredients. If you made the preserved lemons I wrote about recently, you’re all set to make a classic Moroccan chermoula — but even without the preserved lemon, the chermoula will boost your dinner’s style. I learned about it at my sister’s table, the legacy of her Peace Corps years in Morocco……..
Enjoy More  here: https://tucson.com/entertainment/caliente/three-herb-based-sauces-bring-lively-flavor-to-your-table/article_6c9cfc00-429c-5a6b-a347-dc38d87ef0d4.html
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Separated by global pandemic, Seattle Peace Corps volunteer reunited with her cat.

Casey Boulding was separated from her cat when she was forced to leave Morocco while volunteering with the Peace Corps. The two finally reunited months later……..
Read the rest here: https://www.king5.com/article/news/health/coronavirus/seattle-peace-corps-volunteer-reunited-with-cat/281-d5117369-281b-42bb-a581-3ff8559c546f
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Women Empowerment: Washington Cites Morocco as Example

12 August 2020 Washington

The US Department of State cited Morocco as an example in terms of women's empowerment through the campaign to support the melkization operation aimed at appropriating Sulaliyate lands, as part of the partnership with the Millennium Challenge Corporation.

On the occasion of a virtual event held Tuesday on the development and prosperity of women in the world in the presence of the Advisor to the American president, Ivanka Trump, Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun indicated that the Millennium Challenge Corporation worked, through the Global Women's Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP), with the Moroccan government to recognize the rights of all heirs, mainly girls, to inherit and own land…..
Follow it here:  http://www.mapnews.ma/en/actualites/world/women-empowerment-washington-cites-morocco-example
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MCA-Morocco Launches Project to Evaluate National Employment Policy

MCA-Morocco is a public institution born from a partnership between the Moroccan and US governments.

By Yahia Hatim -  Aug 10, 2020 Rabat

The Millennium Challenge Account Morocco agency (MCA-Morocco) has launched an initiative to support the evaluation of employment and labor market policies in Morocco. MCA-Morocco announced the initiative in a statement on Monday, August 10. The initiative, dubbed “Lab Emploi,” aims to build national capacities for the assessment, development, and implementation of employment and labor market policies, based on reliable scientific evidence and data. It also aims to improve the efficiency of national policies to meet the challenges of the labor market. These relate to creating and maintaining employment, especially in view of the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

To reach the objectives, MCA-Morocco will collaborate with the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the Harvard Kennedy School’s Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD). The two research centers are set to collaborate with Morocco’s Policy Center for the New South (PCNS), the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P), and the National Higher School of Administration (ENSA). Institutional partners of the initiative include the Ministry of Labor, the National Agency for the Promotion of Employment and Competences (ANAPEC), the National Initiative for Human Development (INDH), and the National Observatory for Human Development (ONDH)………..
More here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314999/mca-morocco-launches-project-to-evaluate-national-employment-policy/
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Breaking down barriers: women’s football in Morocco

By Dylan Mohamed RABAT

Many people around the world would not expect football to be popular among women in conservative Morocco, but it is, in fact, a fast-growing phenomenon.
So serious is the North African country about the ladies that they have hired the services of former United States of America defender Kelly Lindsey as head of women’s football for the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF). The American is doing an amazing job, and results of her passion and hard work are beginning to emerge. “There is great talent in Morocco,” said Lindsey this week. “You can see and feel football is a very important part of the culture, and the women at the highest level are very talented. “Our challenges are in the depth, which is why this convention is so important and valuable.  We need to raise the professionalism of the game, so that we can develop more depth of talent for the country through all levels of the game.”

The convention that Lindsey speaks about is a groundbreaking seminar by the Moroccan federation on how to develop the women’s game in the country to be at par with their male counterparts. They have dubbed this a “Marshall Plan”, and, according to the FRMF president Fouzi Lekjaa, it is aimed at “enhancing the practice at club level and create a competitive professional national championship that will serve as a reservoir to strengthen the ranks of national teams.”
Last week, Lekjaa officiated at a ceremony where “a contract of objectives for women’s football” was signed between stakeholders who included National League of Women’s Football president Khadija Illa and the FRMF’s national technical director, a Welshman called Osian Robert. ……………
Follow the link here:  https://thisisafrica.me/africans-rising/breaking-down-barriers-womens-football-in-morocco/
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Marooned in Morocco: An Asian American’s Experience

We are “stuck” in Morocco, but despite the confusion, we are safe, healthy, and supported, privileges that should not be taken for granted.

By Claire Blood-Cheney -  Jul 11, 2020

Today I woke up in the beautiful beach town Essaouira. Although I am unable to return home to the US, I must admit, Morocco is not a bad place to be stuck. After making breakfast in a brightly lit Airbnb and getting ready to start the day, my boyfriend and I decided to take a walk to explore our home for the foreseeable future. Upon stepping outside, we passed a group of young men. “Nihao! Japan? Corona?” one shouted, snapping me back to the present: What had started as a senior spring break trip turned into a month (or longer) adventure. 

In the span of a couple weeks, so much has changed.  The second semester of my senior year of college as well as graduation will be done remotely. A self-designed summer fellowship in Europe I received funding for hangs in the balance. A company I applied to and completed the final round of interviews for before break announced they have put a hold on hiring for the time being. When and how we will be able to return home remains unclear…………..
Check it here:  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/07/309416/marooned-in-morocco-an-asian-americans-experience/
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Zineb Bouchra Revives Famous Art in Moroccan and Amazigh Style

“I chose to integrate Amazigh culture in my recreations because I am Amazigh and I believe the culture is rich with many artistic features.”

By Jihad Dardar -  Aug 9, 2020 Agadir native Zineb Bouchra is an artist who brings Oriental and Renaissance paintings to life in a unique Moroccan, Amazigh (Berber) style to promote the culture and lifestyle.

The 18-year-old artist started recreating famous paintings and other iconic images in April, at the beginning of the COVID-19 quarantine. She chose works such as Leonardo Da Vinci’s archetypal portrait masterpiece, the Mona Lisa, and the amazing self-portrait of Mexican legend Frida Kahlo. Inspired by the Moroccan and Amazigh cultures, Zineb recreates paintings using traditional Moroccan clothes such as djellaba and caftans. The djellaba is a long dress with a hood that both Moroccan men and women wear, though women usually sport more colorful varieties than men. The caftan is one of the other most famous pieces of Moroccan traditional clothing, originally adopted from the Ottoman Empire and since adapted to fit the Moroccan style.
Read more here:  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314792/zineb-bouchra-revives-famous-art-in-moroccan-and-amazigh-style/
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Sports Minister Launches Hashtag to Invite Input From Moroccan Youth

The ministry will then study the suggestions and pick the best proposal.

By Taha Mebtoul -  Aug 17, 2020 Rabat

The Moroccan Minister of Youth, Sports, and Culture, Othman El Ferdaous, revealed several “resilience” measures that his ministry has taken to promote and reform sports in the wake of COVID-19, most recently including a hashtag for suggestions from youth. El Ferdaous announced the reform in a Facebook post on Sunday, noting that “sports practice is a form of self-treatment and one of the means of citizenship education.” “It is also an art that requires the ability to recognize and appreciate talent,” he added.

In order to engage the Moroccan youth in sports, the minister launched the hashtag #FikraRyadia, meaning “sports idea,” to welcome Moroccans’ suggestions to address the sector’s challenges. Participants should send their suggestions with the hashtag before August 26. Project suggestions should address issues that require a solution; shortcomings in a current solution; an innovative approach or technology; an approach to reduce inequalities in sports; or an update on a certain sports service. The minister pointed in particular to gender equity in Moroccan sports and overall inclusion as central aims of the campaign……
Follow the link here:  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315727/sports-minister-launches-hashtag-to-invite-input-from-moroccan-youth/
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Travel to Morocco: Discover The Six Best Moroccan Beaches

Morocco borders both the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, making it a land of many must-visit, unique beaches.

By Jihad Dardar -  Aug 15, 2020

If you are an ocean lover who loves spending vacation sunbathing in the warm sands and swimming in blue waters, then make sure your travel to Morocco takes you to the best beaches in the country. When you think about Morocco, your mind may drift to Marrakech, vibrant medinas, and the Sahara desert—all of these spark wanderlust for travelers. However, some might not know that Morocco also has some of the world’s best beaches, which can make anyone’s travel to Morocco a memorable experience. Morocco’s coastline is nearly 2,000 kilometers long and runs along both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. The many different beaches are attractions to locals, tourists, and water sport enthusiasts…….
Follow the link here https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315346/travel-to-morocco-discover-the-six-best-moroccan-beaches/
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Travel to Morocco: The Six Must-Visit Restaurants in Marrakech

From an elegant palace-turned-restaurant to iconic street stalls, each of these establishments will delight any culinary enthusiast.

By Jihad Dardar -  Aug 16, 2020

Any foodie preparing to travel to Morocco’s ochre city of Marrakech should make sure to plan for a meal at the city’s best restaurants. Marrakech is one of Morocco’s most wonderful cities, with food just as exotic and delightful as the city’s Atlas Mountain landscapes and enchanted Arabian nights. From open-air restaurants to fine dining establishments to Jemaa el-Fna stalls, culinary sites in Marrakech are where multiple cultures collide. The fusion of European and traditional Moroccan food is evident in Amazigh (Berber) cooking traditions and the newer Arabic, French, and Spanish flavors.

Moroccan cuisine is a combination of traditional and innovative dishes, flavorful seasoning, and rich, varied ingredients. From its most famous dishes, such as couscous, chicken bastilla, and vegetable tagine, to its most traditional dishes, such as rfissa and harrira, every bite will allow you to explore not just the flavors but also the culture and history of Morocco. Restaurants in Marrakech offer you variations of Moroccan, French, and Spanish cuisine and a remarkable atmosphere that will make your dining experience in Morocco even more memorable. These are some of the best restaurants in Marrakech that you must visit during your travel to Morocco…………..
Follow the link here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315321/travel-to-morocco-the-six-must-visit-restaurants-in-marrakech/
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Ministry of Environment: Morocco Recycles All of Its Imported Waste

Between 2016 and 2019, Morocco imported approximately 1.6 million tons of waste.

By Yahia Hatim -  Aug 17, 2020 Rabat

Morocco only imports waste that can be recycled into Moroccan industry, the Ministry of Energy, Mines, and Environment announced on August 17.
The ministry made the announcement in an explanatory notice after several local NGOs denounced ministerial decisions 1339.20 and 1340.20, relating to the importing of waste. Decision 1339.20 provides a list of toxic waste materials that Morocco cannot import. Meanwhile, decision 1340.20 relates to the conditions and methods of importing waste.

The ministry began its note by expressing thanks to the NGOs that reacted to the legal texts for their environmental awareness. “We confirm our need for a strong and effective engagement from environmental NGOs and our readiness to provide all necessary explanations,” the document said. The government department assured that Morocco is committed to never importing any toxic or hazardous waste that does not meet the requirements set in Law 28.00. The legal text, issued on December 7, 2006, relates to waste management in Morocco.
Follow the link here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315742/ministry-of-environment-morocco-recycles-all-of-its-imported-waste/
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Morocco’s COVID-19 Crisis Puts 1.06 Million People At Risk of Poverty

In a 14-page report, UN organizations, along with the HCP, presented an extensive analysis of the COVID-19 crisis in Morocco and gave a series of recommendations to overcome national challenges.

By Yahia Hatim -  Aug 17, 2020 Rabat

The COVID-19 crisis is expected to put 1.06 million people in Morocco at risk of poverty in 2020, a recent report revealed. The report, co-authored by Morocco’s High Commission for Planning (HCP), the UN System in Morocco, and the World Bank, studies the social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis on Morocco.
According to the report, published on August 17, the percentage of Moroccans “vulnerable to poverty” or “poor” is expected to reach 19.87% in 2020.

The report begins with an introduction to the epidemiological situation in Morocco, as well as the medical staff available to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. According to numbers presented in the study, Morocco counts 25,574 medical personnel and 3,000 intensive care beds. In the first three months after the beginning of the domestic outbreak, Morocco’s strict lockdown was efficient in saving lives, according to the report. However, after the Moroccan government began easing some lockdown measures in early June, the epidemiological situation “quickly evolved with the appearance of several industrial and familial clusters.”

In terms of socio-economic indicators, the report highlighted the sectors hardest-hit by the COVID-19 crisis in Morocco, despite efforts to mitigate the pandemic’s impacts. “Strict measures, extensive financial compensation efforts, and a continuous demonstration of solidarity and hope … have allowed, to some extent, to attenuate the effects of the crisis. Some sectors, however, have been strongly impacted, notably tourism, transport, cultural activities and events, but also, transversally, the informal sector,” the report said…………..
More here  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315674/moroccos-covid-19-crisis-puts-1-06-million-people-at-risk-of-poverty/
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Meknes and Marrakech: Two Moroccan Cities That Share Wonders

This journey through the monuments and music of Meknes and Marrakech should inspire your next trip to Morocco.
By Mossaab Bourchachene -  Aug 16, 2020
Meknes and Marrakech are two ancient Moroccan cities that share various aspects of history and architecture.
Meknes is one of the most remarkable and interesting cities in the country. Located north-central Morocco on the highland of Saiss, Meknes is a strategic place for the military and agriculture. 
The city of Meknes was established in the 11th century (1061 A.D.) by the Al-Moravids. At first, it was built as a military base, but when Moulay Ismail, the founder of the Alawite dynasty, started his reign, he chose Meknes to be his capital, from 1671 to 1727. The city of Meknes is also known as the Ismaili capital…………
Follow it here  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315304/meknes-and-marrakech-two-moroccan-cities-that-share-wonders/
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Metal Music Through the Eyes of a Moroccan Metalhead

Mohssine, the lead vocalist of the metal bands Alcantagram and I MAKE NOISE, sheds light on the Moroccan metal scene from on stage.

By Reda Benmalou -  Aug 9, 2020

Mohssine M. is a 27-year-old Moroccan whose fascination with metal music at a young age led him to become the singer and songwriter in various Moroccan metal bands, including Alcantagram (death metal) and I MAKE NOISE (deathcore/djent/metalcore). Mohssine is contributing immensely to the Moroccan metal scene with a strong passion and the desire to inspire the same spirit of enthusiasm with the youth in his country.

Metal as a music genre is known worldwide for its heavy cadence, powerful sounds, and peculiar yet diverse choice of lyrics. These attributes make it an acquired taste rather than a common musical preference. In Morocco, the metal community is even smaller and more tightly-knit. However, we can always find examples of young people who wholeheartedly offer their time and efforts to nurture and promote the metal culture among their peers……………
Follow the link here  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314769/metal-music-through-the-eyes-of-a-moroccan-metalhead/
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Travel in Morocco: Exploring Tinmel Mosque, a Hidden Gem

Almost everyone who has been to Morocco knows the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, but few are familiar with the only other Moroccan mosque to allow non-Muslim visitors.

BY Elizabeth Jay Allouche - Aug 8, 2020

In the heart of Morocco, lies a sacred place that remains unknown to many: Tinmel Mosque. Though this hidden gem may not be familiar to you, I can assure you that it should most definitely be on the top of your Morocco travel bucket list. Let me tell you a story, akin to the traditional hikayat (storytelling) of Morocco, so that you, too, can come to love Tinmel Mosque and her secrets as much as I do.

Finding calm in the eye of the storm

In the midst of all that is unsure, I find myself looking for my happy place in moments of meditation. I’ve lived in Morocco for over half a decade, visiting countless small towns in all of her corners. I came here as a PeaceCorps volunteer and stayed after my contract ended to continue doing development work with the people who had won my heart. 

I’ve been fortunate enough to visit two dozen countries across the globe, but Morocco is the only place to feel like home since moving out of my childhood house decades ago. I can think of countless places that bring me joy: the top of Montmartre on a quiet winter morning, sunset at Cape Sounio, bike riding in Ayutthaya, boating around the Amalfi coast, watching the sun rise from the roof of my little house in the Sahara. For me, each of those places is so much more than the scenery; each place is tied to the emotions I was feeling in the moment.

As a long-time resident in Morocco, I come to one place more than others when I tap into my happy place, my deepest moment of zen: Tinmel Mosque. Few people are aware that this place exists. Even many Moroccans I’ve spoken to have never heard of it. It’s so far off the beaten path, you aren’t always guaranteed transportation to get there. It’s small and sacred, and it evokes strong emotions of comfort and calm.

Off the beaten path

Most mornings when the fajr (dawn call to prayer) wakes me, I grumble a little, roll back over, and drift off to sleep for a couple more hours. That morning, however, the 5:30 prayer synced with my alarm, much to my chagrin. My dear friend Mustapha wanted to show me something he promised was like nothing I’d seen before. How could I resist?.......
Read more here:  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314475/travel-in-morocco-exploring-tinmel-mosque-a-hidden-gem/
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How Vegetarians and Vegans in Morocco are Advancing Social Understanding

Moroccan vegetarians and vegans are a minority community that faces discouraging societal pressure.

By Asmae Nakib -  Jul 11, 2020

In a world where the overwhelming majority of people consume meat on a regular basis, some communities have chosen to eliminate it from their diets either for religious purposes, such as some within South Asian societies, or for health, environmental, or ethical purposes. Experts estimate that approximately 5% of people worldwide are vegetarian or vegan.

In Morocco, where society deems meat fundamental in a dish, the practices of vegetarianism and veganism are quite rare. Those who choose to become vegetarians or vegans in Morocco face numerous struggles. In an interview with Morocco World News (MWN), Moroccan vegetarians and vegans explained their reasons for changing their diets and voiced the challenges they face as a result.……..
Read more here:  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/07/309223/how-vegetarians-and-vegans-in-morocco-are-advancing-social-understanding/
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From Meknes to Zhengzhou, Henan: A Moroccan Teacher’s Journey in China

“Live a life you will remember” has been Achraf Bakirou’s personal motto for years, and through his experience, he is following it to the letter.

By Reda Benmalou - Aug 16, 2020

Achraf Bakirou is a 24-year-old Moroccan originally from Casablanca, who currently lives and works as an English language teacher in Zhengzhou, a city in China’s Henan province. Coincidence, opportunity, then perseverance led to what he describes as “a real-life adventure and an authentic experience.” Achraf’s journey began right after he obtained his bachelor’s degree in English Studies from the University of Moulay Ismail in Meknes. While many students opted for postgraduate studies, he had a different vision in mind. He decided that his life as a student had come to its conclusion, and that a new phase beckoned him.
“I simply wanted to take a break from studies and just focus on something that is challenging. Well continuing my studies would have been also a challenging task to me, but not the kind of challenging task that I would go for.” In short, he says, “I wanted to get out of my comfort zone.”
Read more here:  https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315425/from-meknes-to-zhengzhou-henan-a-moroccan-teachers-journey-in-china/
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Travel to Morocco: Your Guide to the Historic Imperial Cities

Morocco is the home of colorful culture and diverse heritage, perfectly displayed in its four imperial cities: Fez, Marrakech, Meknes, and Rabat.

By Jihad Dardar -  Aug 8, 2020 Rabat

To fully experience the heritage, history, and society of Morocco, you will have to visit and explore its four imperial cities: Fez, Marrakech, Meknes, and Rabat.
These cities were each the country’s capital at one point in history, during the different Moroccan dynasties. The magnificent cities are decorated with historical architecture that reflects Morocco’s fascinating and diverse history. They each have their own unique charm and are home to ancient cities, called medinas, divided by market areas called souks……………
Read more here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314469/travel-to-morocco-your-guide-to-the-historic-imperial-cities/
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Rabat’s MMVI Exhibits Major Milestones in Morocco’s Art History

Mehdi Qotbi, president of the National Museum Foundation, said that in times of COVID-19, “art and culture have become more essential than ever to our daily lives.”

By Kristen Gianaris -  Aug 8, 2020 Rabat

The Mohammed VI Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMVI) in Rabat is exhibiting major milestones in Morocco’s art history in its latest exhibition, “Moroccan Painters in the National Collections, From Ben Ali R’bati to Today.”  The exhibition, opening on August 12, will welcome visitors to view the paintings curated from national collections. These collections belong to the Academy of the Kingdom, the Ministry of Culture, Youth, and Sports, and the National Museum Foundation (FNM).

In a recent press statement, the FNM said that the exhibit “traces the artistic genesis in Morocco.” It includes at least one hundred major works that span Morocco’s art history, beginning with Ben Ali R’bati, the first Moroccan painter to exhibit in Europe. ………….
Check more here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314714/rabats-mmvi-exhibits-major-milestones-in-moroccos-art-history/
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Moroccan Cuisine: Take a Bite of Morocco’s Melokhia (Okra) Tagine

While some culinary enthusiasts do not seem too wild about okra, the vegetable is rich with nutrients.

By Safaa Kasraoui -  Aug 9, 2020 Rabat

If I am ever asked to describe Morocco’s cuisine, my answer will be simple: Morocco’s culinary art is a rich repertoire of colors and different flavors. If you have ever visited Morocco or are planning to after the COVID-19 crisis, you have probably already heard about the culinary art in the North African country. Moroccan tagines are the gems of Morocco’s cuisine. They are the most important dishes you could try while visiting the North African country. The word tagine does not only refer to lamb or chicken dishes, because there are so many various ingredients that you can use to prepare a delicious tagine.
The tagine gets its name from the dish in which it is cooked, and the contents are up to the chef…………….
Follow it here:https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/314517/moroccan-cuisine-take-a-bite-of-moroccos-melokhia-okra-tagine/
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Starvation looms for Morocco's horses as tourism collapses

By AMIRA EL MASAITI - Associated Press - Sunday, August 9, 2020 MARRAKECH, Morocco (AP)

Abdenabi Nouidi sold his favorite horse for $150 to help feed the others on the team that pulls tourists in carriages through the buzzing streets of Marrakech, and he is still scared about the future for the others. The prospect of starvation looms for carriage horses and other animals normally used in Morocco’s tourist mecca., since visitors have vanished during the coronavirus pandemic. The Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad, or SPANA, says hundreds of Morocco’s carriage horses and donkeys are threatened amid the collapsing tourism industry. They are among the estimated 200 million horses, donkeys, camels and elephants worldwide providing various livelihoods for over a half-billion people………
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/aug/9/moroccos-carriage-horses-suffer-as-covid-19-bars-t/====================================

The Gum Arabic in the southern region of Morocco

K Azzaoui, B. Hammouti, A. Lamhamdi, E. Mejdoubi, M. Berrabah

Abstract: Gum arabic (GA) of the Marocco  is a branched-chain, complex polysaccharide, either neutral or slightly acidic, found as a mixed calcium, magnesium and potassium salt of a polysaccharide acid. The backbone is composed of 1,3-linked β - D- galactopyranosyl units. The side chains are composed of two to five 1,3- linked b- D- galactopyranosyl units, joined to the main chain by 1, 6- linkages. Gum acacia (GA) is used in pharmaceutical, cosmetic and food industries as an emulsifier and stabilizer, and in some countries in the traditional treatment of patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Different brands of GA are commercially available, but their comparative efficacy against adenine-induced CKD is unknown. The purpose of this study is to determine the écologic characteristics who assured the Acacia gum in the area of Morocco, its development and reproduction in an arid environment, as in our area…….
Vol 3, No 1 (2015) > Azzaoui
Check full article in pdf here: https://revues.imist.ma/index.php/morjchem/article/view/2300/1843
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Travel to Morocco: 6 Tips on Cultural Etiquette

Moroccans are very welcoming and open to other cultures, ideas, and ways of living, but the cultural etiquette in Morocco is unique.

By Jihad Dardar -  Jul 26, 2020

As much as it is exciting, it can be intimidating to travel to unfamiliar countries, but these tips for cultural etiquette in Morocco can help any visitor enjoy its diverse offerings without confusion. Morocco is a magical travel destination for many people. The colorful and diverse country, with its snow-capped mountains, stunning beaches, and vibrant golden desert can attract anyone interested in experiencing an extraordinary adventure. Just like its landscapes, Morocco’s culture is very diverse. Foreign influences throughout the years mean Morocco is home to people of different ethnicities, and today’s culture reflects this……..
Follow it here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/07/311755/travel-to-morocco-6-tips-on-cultural-etiquette/
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Support Program for Improving Performance of Communes in Morocco: Marrakech Obtains Excellence Grant

17 August 2020 Marrakech

An excellence grant based on performance will be awarded to the commune of Marrakech as part of the Support Program for improving the performance of communes in Morocco in recognition of its efforts in the area of ​​strengthening governance and improving the services provided to citizens and users.

The financial share of the commune of Marrakech of this exceptional grant, awarded within the framework of this program carried out in partnership between the General Directorate of Local Authorities (DGCL), the World Bank and the French Development Agency (AFD), amounts to 936 million centimes.
Regarding the communes ranked first in terms of financial share, Casablanca comes first with 1.2 billion centimes, followed by Fez (1.1 billion centimes), Tangier (950 million centimes), Marrakech (936 million centimes), Salé (800 million centimes), Meknes (600 million centimes), Tetouan (450 million centimes) and Agadir (457 million centimes).
Follow it here http://www.mapnews.ma/en/actualites/regional/support-program-improving-performance-communes-morocco-marrakech-obtains
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Moroccan-Tunisian Interval Art Collective Empowers MENA Artists

The new Interval Art Initiative Highlights 21 Moroccan Artists in its virtual exhibition IM (PULSION).

By Kristen Gianaris -  Aug 16, 2020 Rabat

In May, four Moroccan and Tunisian art enthusiasts came together to create Interval, a non-profit art collective that documents and preserves art, empowering artists from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).  “We want to give visibility to the talents in our region. We also want our youth to engage with culture and art in our region,” Interval’s French-Tunisian co-founder Amina Debbiche, 31, told Morocco World News.  “We want to create a new narrative that looks more like us by breaking the cliches of Africanism and Arabness — we should be building bridges between these countries and places rather than grouping them. We want to prevent the overall narrative. We want to listen and create content and spaces for content that the next generation and ones after can access.” …………….
Check it herehttps://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315292/moroccan-tunisian-interval-art-collective-empowers-mena-artists/
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The Battle of Isly: Remembering Morocco’s Solidarity With Algeria

On the 176th anniversary of the Battle of Isly, Morocco remembers its defiance of occupying powers in solidarity with Algeria.

By Morgan Hekking -  Morgan Hekking holds a BA in International Relations from Hobart & William Smith Colleges in Geneva, New York. Aug 14, 2020
Rabat

Morocco commemorates Friday, August 14, the 176th anniversary of the Battle of Isly. On this day in 1844, France attacked Moroccan forces near Oujda, close to the northern border with Algeria, as Morocco’s Sultan refused to abandon his support for Algeria’s resistance against colonial occupation. Though a crushing defeat of Moroccan forces, the Battle of Isly illustrated Morocco’s commitment to its neighbor, Algeria, and the greater Maghreb. The battle unfolded near the Isly River, approximately eight kilometers from the city of Oujda. Marshal Thomas Robert Bugeuad led some 11,000 French troops against Morocco, whose 50,000 men rode under Sidi Mohammed, the son of Sultan Moulay Abderrahmane. Bugeaud instigated the Battle of Isly without a formal declaration of war in a bid to complete France’s conquest of Algeria. He sought to force Morocco to give up its support for Algerian resistance leader Abd el Kader, in favor of the French occupying powers………….
More here: https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315455/the-battle-of-isly-remembering-moroccos-solidarity-with-algeria/
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