The mineret that takes you home

About Membership Volunteer Newsletters Souk Links

Morocco Week in Review 
March 27 2021

Virtual Magazine of Morocco on the Web

VIDEO: Highlighting home in Morocco

By Third Goal  Feb. 20, 2018

Volunteer Madelene Baker highlights home in Morocco. This video was submitted for the 2018 Peace Corps Week Video Challenge.

MRA NGO Raises Awareness Against Violence Towards Women in Morocco

The aim of the MRA NGO is to support women and women’s rights.

By Nihale Azahhaf  - Mar 26, 2021

On Thursday, NGO Mobilising for Rights Associates (MRA) held a webinar to discuss research findings  on the violence against women under the theme, “Intimate Partner Violence Against Women in Morocco.” The online meeting featured Aicha Sakmassi, executive director of the association Moroccan Women’s Voices; Saida Kouzzi, a founding partner in Mobilising for Rights Associates NGO; Hasna Allali, president of Amal Association for Women and Development; and Amal El Azzouzi, president of association Tafiil Moubadarat, meaning Activating Initiatives. Morocco World News also attended the meeting. According to Amal El Azzouzi, some of the central objectives of the research is to spread awareness regarding violence against women in Morocco and make the government more responsive to the issue of violence against women………………………………..
MRA Raises Awareness Against Violence Towards Women in Morocco (

Morocco, United Nations Sign Agreement to Promote Youth Development

Minister of Culture, Othman El Ferdaous, chaired the ceremony celebrating the agreement between Morocco and the United Nations.

By  Salah Eddine Mazouz  - Mar 17, 2021

Morocco’s Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports and the United Nations System signed on Wednesday the first joint annual work plan for youths. The agreement reflects both parties’ ambition for the implementation of national priorities in youth development and marks their mutual commitment to work together to implement key reforms and initiatives in the field. Through the agreement, the United Nations system will provide technical and financial support to the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports for the deployment of the new youth centers, the renewal of its governance and animation framework, and the operation and implementation of the National Integrated Youth Policy (SNIJ). The (SNIJ) core objectives are: Increasing economic opportunities for youths and promoting employability; increasing access and quality of basic services for youth and reducing geographic disparities, and promoting the active participation of youths in social and civic life and decision-making. The UN’s support also addresses the implementation of a national system to collect, process, and analyze youth information,  and the launch of regional and local initiatives for young people in terms of social entrepreneurship and innovation.
The agreement will be implemented through a series of innovative activities and programs directly related to youth and civil society institutions active in the field.

The UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), UN International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) came together to chair the agreement with the ministry. The agreement comes after the success of the project “Engaging Civil Society and Youth in Public Policy Dialogue in North Africa” launched by the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF). The project aimed at promoting the participation of youth in public policy through several activities. “The project has been a big success in getting young people engaged with public policy. As well as project participants standing as candidates in the recent Moroccan vote, a number of them also acted as election observers,” the UN said……………

Two Moroccan Women Among Nominees for Berkeley Awards

By  Safaa Kasraoui  - Mar 17, 2021 Rabat

Two Moroccan female leaders have been nominated for the Berkeley World Business Analytics Awards in the “Woman of the year” category. The award celebrates individuals who are successful in their field of expertise. Morocco’s Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni, an international expert in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and member of the World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology of UNESCO is one of the nominees. “I am very honored with this nomination for the Berkley World Business Analytics Award, Seghrouchni told state media. Seghrouchni received her Ph.D. from the University Pierre and Marie Curie in the field of Artificial Intelligence. The Fisher Center for Business Analytics (FCBA) organized the Berkeley World Business Analytics Awards for the first time to recognize women who work in innovation ecosystems around the world……………

Famous landmark in Beni Mellal

DiscoverMorocco! As part of the Legation Bicentennial celebration #200Years our #colleague Sacha recently visited a famous landmark in Beni Mellal. Watch and find out where! exactly.

Me Too in Egypt & Morocco

Ursula Lindsey The New York Review April 8th issue

In both countries, burgeoning movements to hold men accountable for sexual violence have led to new waves of repression. On July 1, 2020, Nadeen Ashraf, a twenty-two-year-old student at the American University of Cairo, noticed that a 2018 post by a fellow student to an unofficial university-related Facebook group had been removed. The post had warned about another student, Ahmed Bassam Zaki, a young man from a rich and powerful family who sexually harassed and blackmailed young women, and it had garnered many comments, including by other female students who corroborated its allegations. Its author hadn’t known where else to share it, and now it was gone. Ashraf also knew that a female classmate had recently accused Zaki of harassment on her own social media account but had taken down the post when his family threatened legal action. Incensed, Ashraf created an Instagram account, named it Assault Police (i.e., a police force against assault), and listed some of the numerous allegations against Zaki. The next morning she discovered that her account had thousands of followers; dozens of women contacted her to share their stories of being assaulted by Zaki…

American Citizen learning/speaking Darija and Amazigh language on Facebook

Race2Space: Semifinalists Share Their Passion for Science

Twelve winners will go to NASA space camp for astronomy training.

By  Zineb Bourchouk  - Mar 17, 2021

The Race2Space competition gives Moroccan high school students the opportunity to share their passion with the world and win a fully-funded trip to NASA space camp.  “The Race2Space contest makes Space Camp possible for young people who have aptitude in STEM and science communication but do not have the resources to attend Space Camp,” said the website. The participants enter the competition by submitting a 3-minute video of themselves explaining “in a simplified and new way” a scientific topic of their choice.  The public can vote on the website until April 2nd. There are 16 days left! The winners will be announced on April 5th. ……

Race2Space: Moroccan Student Aya Attar Conceptualizes Time

While in quarantine, Aya Attar was intrigued by the concept of time.

By  Zineb Bourchouk  - Mar 16, 2021 Rabat

Aya Attar is a second-year baccalaureate student from Azrou, a city near Ifrane in Morocco. A semi-finalist in the Race2Space contest, Attar is working on a project aimed at explaining and conceptualizing time.  In a short video about her interest in time conceptualization, she spoke enthusiastically about her recent experience of permanent flatness and ordeal during the global COVID-19 panic inspired her to more closely explore our relationship with, and understanding of, time.  While Aya was in quarantine during the pandemic, she noticed that the absence of an outside environment affected our perception of time. 
Aya links our understanding of time, as human beings, to the cues we get from our environment. ……….

Solo Female Travel: Experiencing Moroccan Tourism During COVID-19

Let’s talk about Western prejudice around female solo travel in a Muslim country.

By  Aine Donnellan  - Mar 13, 2021

Let’s talk about Western prejudice around female solo travel in a Muslim country. I am a 24-year-old woman from Sweden currently solo-traveling through Morocco. Simply reading that sentence will induce feelings of discomfort and fear in many people. The basis of such emotions, however, is grounded in misinformation and Islamophobia—and from my experience, lacks more truth than it contains……………….

Morocco’s Cannabis Legalization Bill: Translated and Annotated

After weeks of speculation, Morocco’s cannabis legalization bill has finally been made public.

By Khouloud Haskouri and Jasper Hamann -  Mar 18, 2021 Rabat

Morocco is legalizing cannabis at a breakneck pace, with its legalization bill likely to receive approval within a month of its conception. The bill, so far only available in Arabic, contains a wealth of information on the government’s framework on which it aims to build a multi-billion dollar legal cannabis industry.
The devil is in the detail, and as such, Morocco World News embarked on a mission to translate and explain the bill for our domestic and international audiences. Many sections of the bill, primarily involving the domestic market, require additional legislation, yet the bill in its current state allows for a good overview of Morocco’s intended cannabis framework. …………………..

CNDH International Conference: Protecting Women in Humanitarian Crises

In times of crisis, the need for humanitarian aid and protection becomes prominent.

By  Zineb Bourchouk  - Mar 17, 2021 Rabat

The National Committee for International Humanitarian Law (CNDH) organized an international conference under the name of “Protecting Women in Humanitarian Crises.”  The conference took place on March 17, coinciding with the women’s history month and 9 days after International Women’s Rights Day
Farida El Khamlichi explained that focusing on what women endure during armed conflicts, natural disasters, and health crises is the reason behind choosing the conference topic.  El Khamlichi made an important and essential point in her speech by questioning the effectiveness of today’s international humanitarian law.
“If international humanitarian law provides protection for women in armed conflicts, then what women are exposed to in those conflicts raises the question about the effectiveness of the provisions of international humanitarian law,” she voiced. She stated that Morocco has been at the forefront of advocating for human rights nationally and internationally.  El Khamlichi expressed the CNDH’s aspirations “to contribute to the advancement of international humanitarian law by highlighting its rules directed at the protection of women.” Omar Hilale, Morocco’s permanent representative to the UN, gave a speech to thank the CNDH for organizing a conference to discuss such an important topic. ……………………………

Morocco’s Town of Figuig: Beauty of the Crafts

With its diverse cultural influences, Figuig is a must-visit destination for those who love traditional craftsmanship.

By Zineb Bourchouk -  Mar 18, 2021 Rabat

Morocco is known as a haven for traditional arts and crafts, easily accessible at the traditional souks. The variety of colors and items stem from the melting pot that is Moroccan society. From Jewish, Arab, and Amazigh cultures came arts and crafts which blended together creating the unique Moroccan styles. Although some crafts may be comparable to those of other North African and Middle Eastern countries or trace back to sub-Saharan countries, their uniqueness remains in the way they are made and sold. This is on full display in Figuig, an oasis town in eastern Morocco with a population of 10,872. Located at the meeting point of the High Plateaus and the northwest edge of the Sahara in the Oriental region, the town is 370 km southeast of Oujda. It may be a bit off the beaten path, but its rich history and flourishing crafts scene can captivate any visitor………………..

#Protect_Teachers: Moroccans Show Solidarity With Contractual Teachers

By Safaa Kasraoui -  Mar 18, 2021

The hashtag comes in response to the security approach contractual teachers faced during a protest in Rabat on Monday. Rabat – Public figures, activists, students, and teachers are expressing support for and solidarity with contractual educators after Monday’s protest in Rabat. The online solidarity hashtag is going viral, with thousands of people sharing posts with #protect_teachers_in_Morocco. Hundreds of teachers from across Morocco’s regions rallied in Rabat on Monday, calling for their engagement in the public sector. Footage online shows security services dispersing protesters using violence against teachers. Videos viral online also show a man with civilian clothes resorting to violence and kicking teachers, who were peacefully walking during the protests.
Morocco opened an investigation to identify the man, with many people sharing the videos and his photos…………..

US Sahara Recognition: Morocco Must Choose Action Over Complacency

Morocco should also be mindful of the importance of the questions of human rights and individual freedom in the Biden administration’s agenda.

By  Samir Bennis  - Samir Bennis is a political analyst. Mar 18, 2021 Washington D.C

The language US Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price used in a February 22 speech suggests that the Biden administration has no intention to backtrack US recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over its Sahara. The statement contains a key phrase: When he said that the US supports the international community’s efforts to resolve this conflict, he said, “the dispute in Morocco.” This expression is of capital political importance because it denotes that the conflict is taking place in Morocco and not between Morocco and a territory that does not belong to it. This is a clear declaration of the new administration’s intentions and shows that it considers Western Sahara as an integral part of Moroccan territory……………………….

World Tuberculosis Day: Disease Infects 35,000 Moroccans a Year

By  Toms Dumpis  - Mar 24, 2021 Rabat

Annually, World Tuberculosis (TB) Day is commemorated on March 24, in order to raise people’s awareness of the serious health, social, and economic consequences of the disease. TB is a contagious disease caused by bacteria that affects the lungs but can also reach other organs. World Tuberculosis Day is celebrated on March 24, because on the same day in 1882, Dr. Robert Koch announced his discovery of the bacteria that causes TB. This led the way in diagnosing the disease and developing treatment. t remains one of the most deadly infectious diseases in the world. It is responsible for more than 4,000 daily deaths worldwide, and approximately 3,000 deaths annually in Morocco, according to the Moroccan National Association for Awareness and Fight Against Tuberculosis. In Morocco TB still constitutes a serious public health problem. The association notes that the regions of Greater Casablanca, Tetouan, Tangier, Rabat-Kenitra, Fez-Meknes, Marrakesh-Safi, and Souss-Massa-Draa are particularly affected. Morocco’s incidence of TB stands at approximately 97 cases per 100,000 people………………………………….

Sustainable Agricultural Villages As a Panacea to Poverty

It is common to listen to conversations about how women are not sufficiently represented in the corporate world due to systemic discrimination and exclusion. While this holds some truth, I consider it a one-sided view.

By  Olufunmilayo Aiyegbusi  - Mar 23, 2021 Nigeria

As a nursing mother some years ago, I would have given anything to have had a small business. Working in a highly structured law firm and handling several sensitive case files clashed significantly with that phase of my life. There were immunization appointments to keep and calls from daycare because the baby had developed a fever. There were also pressing meetings with clients and numerous pleadings to be drafted. A small business of my own would have afforded me the flexibility that is often difficult to get from a structured workplace.  When my son was diagnosed with pneumonia, I promptly resigned. It broke my boss’ heart (as well as mine) so much so that he rejected my resignation letter and unilaterally converted it to a leave of absence in perpetuity. I was unimaginably broken while nursing my children and had to depend totally on my husband’s income. It is common to listen to conversations about how women are not sufficiently represented in the corporate world due to systemic discrimination and exclusion. While this holds some truth, I consider it a one-sided view………………………

Manal Benchlikha’s NIYA Inspires Moroccan Youth, International Academia

Benchlikha was considered an artistic activist as early as 2014, when she encouraged the younger generation to vote in the national elections in the music video “Mantsayadch” with Ahmed Soultan, Dizzy Dros, DJ Van, Muslim, and Shayfeen.

By  Dina Toum-Benchekroun  - Mar 20, 2021 Miami

Inspiring everyone from millennials to university-level lecturers, Manal Benchlikha’s song “NIYA” pays tribute to Moroccan culture-specific customs as the artist works towards the release of her album “360” in May. At the age of 27, urban pop singer-songwriter Manal Benchlikha has reached audiences from around the globe, showing off her artistic talent and advocating for female empowerment.  Her debut single “Denia,” which earned her the title of Best Female Artist from North Africa in 2015 at the African Music Awards, highlighted her unique music lyrics and jumpstarted her journey to success. Followed by the release of “Kolchi Ban” in 2017 and “Taj” in 2018, Benchlikha’s music videos spurred a wave of public attention as she denounced the stereotypes induced by a historically patriarchal society. Benchlikha was considered an artistic activist as early as 2014, when she encouraged the younger generation to vote in the national elections in the music video “Mantsayadch” with Ahmed Soultan, Dizzy Dros, DJ Van, Muslim, and Shayfeen.  In an exclusive statement to Morocco World News, Manal Benchlikha emphasized the value she attributes by using her music videos as a medium to address crucial topics such as gender stereotypes and feminism. ………………………

COVID-19 Crisis Signals Morocco’s Need for Resilient Education System

The pandemic revealed structural issues within the educational system that have always existed.

By Zineb Bourchouk - Mar 21, 2021 Rabat

The education sector in Morocco is, as elsewhere in the world, among those most affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Nearly 1.6 billion students in 190 countries experienced the direct effect of schools and learning spaces closing down.  Morocco’s state-mandated school closures as part of its health precautions to fight the spread of the COVID-19 virus drew much attention to the education sector and its structural problems.  Structural issues always existed in Morocco’s education system and simply made it harder for students and teachers of all academic levels to adapt to unprecedented methods of teaching and learning during the COVID-19 lockdown. After the current academic year began, the struggle continued as everyone tried to re-adapt and catch up on lost time.  Before the health crisis, Morocco struggled to stay on the right path towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4, set by the UN: Quality Education for All. ……………

Report Lists Morocco Among Countries with ‘Good Image’ in Africa

Several reports show improvement in Morocco’s economy and business climate.

By Safaa Kasraoui - Mar 21, 2021 Rabat

The French Council of Investors in Africa (CIAN) has listed Morocco among African countries with a “good” image across the continent. CIAN’s report ranked Morocco as the second African country with a “good image” after South Africa. Following Morocco are Ghana, Rwanda, and Egypt. The CIAN Barometer also noted a pointed improvement in Morocco’s score in the business climate in Africa. In terms of “doing business,” Morocco is positioned first in Africa — with a score of 2.2 out of 5 against 3.1 in 2019. The country is now even with Maurits, which lost 0.4 point. South Africa and Egypt recorded a score of 2.9; they are followed by Tunisia (2.8), Mauritania (2.6), and Algeria (2.5)…………………….

Down Syndrome Day: Morocco’s Long, Uplifting Road to Social Inclusion

As Morocco marks Down Syndrome Day, 25-year-old Nassim Gryech’s inspiring journey showcases the transformational promise of social inclusion.

By Dina Toum-Benchekroun -  Mar 21, 2021 Miami

March 21st was officially declared by the United Nations in 2012 to be the international awareness day for Down syndrome, as individuals with Down syndrome have three copies of chromosome 21 (trisomy), instead of two.  In an effort to raise awareness of both this day, and the importance of integrating people with intellectual disabilities into society, Moroccan associations and individuals throughout the country have shown tremendous effort in working towards an all-inclusive society. As it stands, the integration of individuals with Down syndrome in Morocco is challenged by social stigmas. Individuals with intellectual disabilities in Morocco often, find themselves marginalized and alienated in a society that sets predetermined notions about their social and mental capabilities. ………………………..

UNFPA Supports the Upcoming Population and Housing Census in Morocco

The aim of UNFPA is to support the right of every human to have a safe and fair life.

By Nihale Azahhaf -  Mar 22, 2021

On 18 March, Luis Mora, the representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFAP) in Morocco, outlined the Fund’s firm support for Morocco’s forthcoming general population and housing census, which is scheduled for 2024, in a meeting with Ahmed Lahlimi Alami, the High Commissioner for Planning (HCP). “UNFPA strongly supports the Kingdom of Morocco for the implementation of the upcoming population census, by integrating the most advanced technologies at the international level,” Mora said. For his part, Lahlimi said that Morocco is collaborating with the UNFPA to prepare for the forthcoming general census of the population via meetings between experts from both sides. In this meeting, Mora lauded the essence of the alliance as well as the “historic” collaboration with the HCP, which is recognized as a national and international reference institution.
The cooperation between the two parties involves the creation of the region’s first database. ……………………..

Creating Golf Homes in Morocco Both Traditional and Modern

Golf is big business in the North African country and the sport has spawned some gorgeous homes for those looking for proximity to it.

By Sam Lubell March 22, 2021

Golf has soared in popularity in the Middle East and North Africa, from Algeria to Qatar. But one country in the region has a sizable head start: Morocco. The sport has been here since the British exported it in the early years of the 20th century. But it gained momentum in the midcentury, thanks to King Hassan II — ruler from 1961 to 1999 — who was golf-crazy and saw the sport as a tool to help his country enter a market-based economy. The king built several courses crafted by some of the world’s top designers, and in 1971 created a golf tournament now called Trophée Hassan II, a permanent part of the European Tour.
The country now has more than 40 highly regarded courses, and both their number and popularity are growing fast. It doesn’t hurt that golf is at the center of Morocco’s latest tourism push, and that Prince Moulay Rachid, Hassan II’s son and the younger brother of King Mohammed VI, is an avid golfer. Or that the weather is sunny more than 300 days a year………………….

Travel Guide: Tourlane Lists Morocco Among Top 5 Safest Countries

While health experts recommend staying home, Tourlane provides a travel guide with the safest countries for travelers wishing to go on a trip this summer.

By Hamza Guessous -  Mar 22, 2021 Rabat

Tourlane, a booking platform for dream vacations, has listed Morocco in the top five safest travel destinations for the third consecutive week. The ranking is conducted in collaboration with Johann Jones, ex-NATO director, now security advisor at Tourlane. Morocco first appeared on Tourlane’s list in Mid-February, two weeks after launching the vaccination campaign. It has since climbed four spots to occupy 5th place, ahead of New Zealand, Iceland, and Zimbabwe, according to Tourlane’s ranking of safest destinations, published on Monday. Alongside Egypt, Morocco is the only North African country to figure in the list for the third consecutive week. To list countries, the booking platform takes into account the risk factor which is related to the pandemic situation. The factors include the 14-day notification rate of COVID-19 cases and the International Health Regulations (IHR) score. Through the travel guide, Tourlane aims to ensure the safety of its travelers while reducing the risk of any potential danger. “Together with our emergency response team, Johann ensures Tourlane travelers are safe on every step of their journey,” said Tourlane.  It added that Johann constantly monitors and assesses risk factors in each Tourlane destination to ensure travelers have up-to-date information on safety before they depart, and have support during their trip. ……………….. #####################################

These postings are provided without permission of the copyright owner for purposes of criticism, comment, scholarship, and research under the "Fair Use" provisions of U.S. Government copyright laws and may not be distributed further without permission of the identified copyright owner.  The poster does not vouch for the accuracy of the content of the message, which is the sole responsibility of the copyright holder.

Return to Friends of Morocco Home Page

About Membership Volunteer Newsletters Souk Links