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Morocco Week in Review 
June 27, 2020

Virtual Magazine of Morocco on the Web

slavery in the Maghreb and Islamic world

Following this Thursday zoom meeting with RPCV/Professor Stephen King, on slavery in the Maghreb and Islamic world, to which a group of RPCVs and staff, participated, here are few references that might be of interest:
Professor King is a comparativist with a particular focus on the Middle East and North Africa. He teaches the following courses: Introduction to Comparative Politics, the Politics of North Africa, Authoritarianism in Comparative Perspective, The Middle East in Comparative Perspective, Islam and Democracy, and Politics of the Developing World.
Professor King is the author of the following books:

Accessible Articles:

Structural Adjustment and Rural Poverty in Tunisia

Stephen King In: 210 (Spring 1999)
World Bank and IMF sponsored neoliberal reforms can have different effects on the political and social structure of receiving nations. Reforms may fortify a status quo unfavorable to the poor, or may even make a bad situation considerably worse, or they may undermine the existing economic system, empowering the poor to participate more actively in new market arrangements.
Officially, World Bank policy supports rural projects leading to greater equality, including land reform, and denies aid to countries that have not instituted such policies. [1] In the case of Tunisia, however, the World Bank has supported projects that have concentrated land holdings and favored large landowners in particular, and neoliberal reforms in general have been detrimental to Tunisia’s peasantry. Interviews with Tunisian peasants revealed their despondency, and occasional rage, at this shift in state development policy:
The workers have become beggars! Why? The sun shines on everyone. Normally the state looks after us all. Why give the land to the rich? They already have land! If you give them more they will no longer think of the poor. What are they going to do with more, buy another car? It’s no good. You find people with 1000 hectares while others won’t even have one hectare. The poor wanted land. Some farmers before got land and they’re doing well. In the early 1970s, a small amount of state land was distributed to former cooperative workers. If you have connections you can get land…. Those who were fired like me always go the administration asking for work. We tell them “you fired us, so give me something to buy bread.” Nothing happens…………
On the following magazine: Middle East Research and Information Project:  (it has lifted it paywall for free access till August 2020)

The Constitutional Monarchy Option in Morocco and Bahrain
May 1, 2011  Stephen Juan King /Originally posted May 2011(Middle East Institute)
Both republics and monarchies are threatened by the popular protests currently engulfing the Middle East and North Africa. However, the monarchies have an additional option not available to the region’s republics.[1] Once challenged by large and mounting popular protests the republics can choose to harshly repress, killing thousands, or break down completely, as in the cases of Egypt and Tunisia. Monarchies, on the other hand, have the additional option of a transition to constitutional monarchies in which they fade away in terms of the exercise of power while maintaining considerable prestige, popularity, and relevance.[2] In the turmoil of the times, the King of Morocco, Muhammad VI, and King Hamad of Bahrain have both responded to protests by promising a transition to constitutional monarchy.[3] Muhammad VI has done this by announcing plans for comprehensive constitutional changes to implement the transition….

Must-Reads: Six Books by Black Authors About Being Black in America

Six of the most riveting books to develop a deeper understanding of race in the United States; now, and throughout history.
By Ava Cutler - Jun 21, 2020
In this time of civil unrest in the United States and around the world, many are looking to educate themselves on one of today’s most prominent topics. Numerous recommended books are non-fiction, such as “How to Be an Antiracist” by Ibram X Kendi and “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo. 
These books are inarguably valuable, but fiction and memoir should not be overlooked. Novels and first-hand accounts can be particularly educational about the Black experience in the United States and provide a holistic view of the history of those experiences. I have read a variety of Black American-focused literature from many eras, which contributed largely to my own understanding of race today. 
This list features some of my favorite novels, memoirs, and prose that everyone should consider reading to develop a deeper understanding of race in the United States; now, and throughout history………………………
Check more here:

Morocco’s 2020 Baccalaureate to Test 441,238 Candidates

The Ministry of Education said it is prioritizing the safety and well being of candidates during preparations for the exams.
By Asmae Nakib - Jun 19, 2020
Rabat – Morocco’s Ministry of Education and Vocational Training released an official statement on June 18 regarding the baccalaureate exam for the 2019/2020 academic year. 
According to the statement on Minister of Education Saaid Amzazi’s official Facebook page, the normal session of the baccalaureate exam is scheduled to take place between July 3 and 9. 
A total of 441,238 candidates have registered to take the exam, 49% of whom are female. 
This year, 318,917 (72%) candidates are students. Students attending state schools represent 64% of total candidates, while those attending private schools represent 8%. 
The remaining 28% is comprised of 122,321 independent candidates participating in the “free-access” baccalaureate (“bac libre”). 
Approximately 856 inmates have also registered to take the baccalaureate and will be scattered across 107 testing rooms.  
The scientific and technical baccalaureate is by far the most popular category, with 249,338 candidates (57%). ……………
Race2Space: 12 Moroccan Winners to Explore NASA Space Camp
Despite their upcoming exams, the 12 young students managed to harness the power of their scientific passions and win the competition.
By Taha Mebtoul - Jun 23, 2020
Rabat – Out of 2,000 participants, 12 students have won the sixth “Race2Space” competition, organized by the “Scientific Morocco Association” and the American Embassy in Rabat.
The competition requires participating students between 15 and 18 years old to make a three-minute video explaining a scientific phenomenon, along with an experiment to demonstrate it.
Despite the fact that some of them were preparing for an upcoming baccalaureate exam, all 12 winners managed to participate successfully. The young Moroccan students made videos in English offering a range of scientific lessons related to physics, biology, and chemistry…………………..

‘Buy Moroccan Act’: Sustaining the ‘Made in Morocco’ Momentum
“Morocco has an opportunity to make history by becoming an industrial power, but only if all Moroccans join efforts.”
By Yahia Hatim - Jun 23, 2020
During the COVID-19 crisis, the “Made in Morocco” label made headlines in international newspapers thanks to the Ministry of Industry’s mobilization to promote local production of medical gear, notably face masks, hazmat suits, and disinfectant gels.
The pandemic led international media to spotlight the innovation and creativity of Moroccan entrepreneurs and businesses in an unprecedented way, leading Moroccans to express both pride and surprise at the potential of the Moroccan industry sector—a potential that several actors have been trying to promote for more than six years.
In 2014, Adil Lamnini, a Moroccan entrepreneur, motivated by his patriotism, decided to create the Professional Association of Moroccan Brands. The organization, a first in Morocco, aims to help Moroccan businesses develop their brands to penetrate international markets………………

Huawei Supports ICT Education in Morocco
Approximately 1,300 Moroccan students have participated in Huawei challenges, events, and roadshows.
By Taha Mebtoul - Jun 25, 2020
Rabat – Moroccan Minister of Education Saaid Amzazi chaired a progress update meeting on Monday regarding cooperative efforts between the ministry and Huawei Technologies to enhance the quality of Morocco’s ICT education.
Amzazi held the meeting with the General Director of Huawei, Zhao Guohui, on June 22 in Rabat.
The meeting reviewed the 14 ICT Academies that Huawei had established in Moroccan universities, training over 700 students. According to Huawei, the ICT Academy program encourages Moroccan students to become Huawei certified for global industry chains…………
MRE Academy to Deploy Development Expertise of Moroccans Abroad
The Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs sees the project as a way of helping MREs to feel invested in the future of Moroccan development.
By Taha Mebtoul - Jun 25, 2020
Rabat – The Moroccan Delegate Ministry to Foreign Affairs launched yesterday, June 24, the MRE Academy. The initiative aims to deploy the expertise of Moroccans Residing Abroad (MRE) in development projects in Morocco.
The MRE Academy is the result of an agreement between the Foreign Affairs Delegate Ministry and the Moroccan Office for Vocational Training and Labor Promotion (OFPPT), following a virtual meeting. Five global networks of Moroccan business people and talents also joined the meeting.
The Minister Delegate for Moroccans Residing Abroad Nezha El Ouafi said  after the signing ceremony that the program aims to establish a platform to transmit the expertise of Moroccans residing abroad. She emphasized the importance of development projects in Morocco………

Remote Education in Morocco: A ‘Double Edged Sword’

During a time when everyday activities are done remotely, a collection of professors and students share their perspectives on online classes in Morocco.
By Asmae Nakib - Jun 20, 2020
Rabat – Morocco declared a state of emergency in March in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Schools all around Morocco shut their doors as a precautionary measure to combat the spread of the virus. The transition from classrooms to online classes has impacted professors’ teaching methods and students’ learning processes. 
In an interview with Morocco World News (MWN), three instructors and three students shared their experiences with online classes. 
Teachers share benefits and drawbacks
Halima Zaari, a professor at University Mohammed V’s Faculty of Sciences in Rabat, thinks that online classes are highly practical on several levels. Working remotely, Zaari usually organizes teaching materials on her laptop and then starts a meeting with students, sharing her screen with them. “I think that the feature of screen sharing is fantastic!” Zaari said. 
The professor also expressed enthusiasm about the app “Google Classroom” and is even considering using it in the future to complement the courses she teaches on campus. “Google Classroom is a really practical app! I use it to check the homework of my students and I can leave comments and correct their mistakes.”  
According to Zaari, the difficulties encountered when teaching online are internet related. Some students do not have the means to pay for an internet subscription or purchase laptops. The lack of resources can hinder the potential of online classes. 
Another instructor seems to share Zaari’s concerns. Aziz Laghribi is an English teacher in Annassim High School in Temara, directly south of Rabat. Laghribi thinks that “students who live in precarious conditions to a great extent are neglected.” ….
Check more here:

What Steps Should Morocco Take to Lead Africa in Health Technology?

With the appropriate mechanisms in place, Morocco’s health technology sector could thrive.
By Kaouthar Lbiati and Tariq Daouda - Jun 20, 2020
“African Tech” is no longer a myth
Two-hundred-thirty-four African start-ups raised $2 billion in 2019 across all stages, from seed to growth. There has thus been a real vertical acceleration of African Tech. But the acceleration is also horizontal, and extends beyond the three traditional champions (Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa), with Egypt also becoming a major player. In 2019, 85% of funds ($1.72 billion) went to the three destinations, and another $211 million to Egypt.
Yet, the dynamics of start-up creation in Morocco are still weak compared to the aforementioned geographies. The total financing of Moroccan companies active in digital technology, all sectors combined, over 2019 reached $7 million, compared to $3.9 million in 2017. This contrast can be explained by the lack of support and financing for Moroccan start-ups, especially in their seed phase……………….
Check more here:

French Museums to Enhance Exhibitions of Morocco’s Amazigh Heritage

The Jardin Majorelle Foundation in Marrakech is set to guide MuCEM and the Yves Saint Laurent Museum in Paris in curating Amazigh heritage collections.
By Morgan Hekking - Morgan Hekking holds a BA in International Relations from Hobart & William Smith Colleges in Geneva, New York. Jun 22, 2020
Marseille’s Museum of Civilizations of Europe and the Mediterranean (MuCEM), the Jardin Majorelle Foundation in Marrakech, and the Yves Saint Laurent Museum in Paris have partnered to highlight the richness and diversity of Morocco’s Amazigh (Berber) heritage.
MuCEM and the Yves Saint Laurent Paris Museum, in partnership with the Jardin Majorelle Foundation, will exchange their different protocols on conservation, restoration, and inventory of Amazigh heritage collections.
A joint statement from the three partners explained that the collaboration adds to their policy of international cooperation and aims to improve knowledge of indigenous Moroccan culture and consolidate means to transmit that knowledge to the public……….
Check more here:

From the South: Senegalese Migration to Morocco

The first of eight, the “From the South” mini-series hopes to present the economic and political conditions in the home countries of Morocco’s most populous migrant communities: Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Guinea, Mali, Nigeria, Niger, and the DRC.
By Madelyn Haden - Jun 20, 2020
The concept of “push and pull” in migration studies is the basis for understanding why people move. This concept directly applies to Senegalese migration to Morocco. “Push” factors refer to the political, economic, and social (or other) conditions in a person’s home country that makes securing their livelihood difficult, if not impossible. “Pull” factors refer to the factors that another region maintains, which motivate a person to try and live in, work with, or access those resources. 
For Morocco, the “pull” factor for many sub-Saharan migrant communities is the prospect of migration to a southern European border. For others, it is the opportunity to pursue higher education, meet with friends and family, engage in tourism, or find gainful employment. While many individuals return to Senegal, many stay and find themselves among the thousands of individuals who end up living, working, and creating their families in Morocco.
One of the most represented nationalities of sub-Saharan migrants in Morocco is Senegalese. ……………….
===========================================This Moroccan Lamb Stew Packs a Protein Punch
This macro-calibrated meal won’t take any longer to prepare than your usual pot of chilli – but it’ll keep you fuelled and full for longer
By Paul Kita  04/06/2020
It’s time you upgraded from yet more beef mince. The meat in this Moroccan Lamb Stew is a muscle-building powerhouse, while the gut-filling fibre in the chickpeas and veg will keep you honest between meals.
From how much protein it provides, where to buy it, cook it and what to serve it with, this is everything you need to know about your new muscle-building staple…………
Continues here:

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