Monday, December 18, 2017

Bull Bars to be Banned in Morocco

An surprise announcement by Morocco's Ministry of Transport has decreed that protection bars on vehicles (Bull bars) will be prohibited from 1 January 2018.

The Ministry says this change is part of a strengthening of road safety and aimed at protecting pedestrians and vulnerable road users. Such a device mounted on a vehicle will be considered as a defect as of the beginning of the new year.

It is unclear if the decree will apply to vehicles brought into the country by tourists.

And, no jaywalking!

This news comes at the same time as police have started enforcing the use of zebra crossings. The law is included on the 2010 Traffic Regulation but is still not extensively applied.

From now and on, crossing streets in Morocco outside of zebra crosses is subject to a MAD 20 to MAD 50 fine. The law has set the settlement fine at MAD 25.


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Moroccan Photo of the Day

Ifrane is the destination of the winter holidays in Morocco! Travellers come from all over the world to enjoy skiing in Michlifen. Ifrane is also very popular with Moroccans for nature weekends and disconnection, in all seasons, but especially in winter, when snowfalls.

See more in our series Photo of the Day 

The View from Fez welcomes contributions to our Photo of the Day Series


Amazigh Festival in Meknes

The 5th edition of the Amazigh (Berber) New Year Festival (2968) will take place from 26 to 28 January in Meknes, under the theme "The dialogue of cultures and the question of identity"

Initiated by the Centre for Shared Memory for Democracy and Peace, the event aims to strengthen cultural customs related to the Amazigh New Year celebration and to discuss issues of identity and common memory. On the menu of this festival, musical evenings dedicated to the celebration of the values ​​of cohabitation, social justice and solidarity and respect for difference.


Sunday, December 10, 2017

Moroccans Protest Over Trump's Jerusalem Decision

Moroccan citizens have responded in large numbers to the national demonstration of solidarity with the Palestinian people that began Sunday in Rabat, in protest against the decision of US President Donald Trump to recognise the holy city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel
Photo crédit : Yassine Toumi/TELQUEL

Organised on the initiative of the National Action Group to Support Palestine and the Moroccan Association of Solidarity with the Palestinian Struggle, this event has seen the participation of some 100,000 people according to its initiators.

All had one message: to reaffirm the consistent position of the Moroccan people of all stripes, political parties, trade unions and human rights organisations, supporting the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and their just cause.

Demonstrators, armed with Palestinian flags or wearing scarves in the colors of Palestine, marched from Bab el-Had square, near the medina, to the Parliament.

"Jerusalem, capital of Palestine!" proclaimed a banner, while protesters, including Islamist sympathizers or trade unionists, chanted slogans against Mr Trump.

"The Palestinian people have suffered a lot and they continue to suffer because of the barbaric colonization of the Israelis," indignant Moustapha, a 43-year-old protester. "We need more than ever to make our voices heard against Trump's decision to deprive Palestinians of their land," said the lawyer from Casablanca with his six-year-old daughter.

To the cries of "Trump you are disqualified!" the demonstrators, coming from several cities near Rabat, then went to the As-Sunna mosque whose minaret dominates the old Rabat.

"Palestine will always be the first cause of Muslims," ​​says Hassan, a 28-year-old teacher from the town of Kenitra, north of Rabat, in a bus available to protestors.

Members of the Moroccan government and other figures of Moroccan political life also participated in the march.

Earlier this week, King Mohammed VI, Chairman of the Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Committee, expressed his "deep concern" at Trump's decision, and warned against "any violation of recognized legal and historical status. "from Jerusalem.


Saturday, December 09, 2017

Heavy Snow Forecast for Morocco

Morocco's Directorate of National Meteorology (DMN) forecasts heavy snowfalls, Monday and Tuesday, with cold weather from Tuesday to Thursday in many parts of the Kingdom

Abundant snowfalls, locally varying between 30 and 50 cm, are expected from Monday at 18:00 to Tuesday at 24:00 in the provinces of Ifrane, khénifra, Azilal, Al Haouz, Beni Mellal, Midelt, Boulemane, Figuig and the reliefs of Chichaoua , Sefrou and Ouarzazate.

The DMN is also forecasting cold weather in some areas from Tuesday to Thursday in some areas.

In Ifrane, Khénifra, Azilal, Al Haouz, Beni Mellal, Chichaoua, Midelt, Boulemane and Figuig provinces, the minimum temperatures will have to vary between -05 and 00 ° C, while the maximum temperatures will have to reach between 03 and 08C. .

The cold weather will alsoimpact the regions of Sefrou, Fes, Tinghir, Taroudante, Chefchaouen, Ouarzazate, Al Hoceima, Taza, Khouribga, Ouezzane, Jerada, Taounate and Taourirte, with minimum temperatures ranging between 00 and 04 C and maximum temperatures between 08 and 13 ° C.

The country will also experience a rainy situation on Monday and Tuesday, according to the same source.


Friday, December 08, 2017

Religious Diplomacy - Fez Meeting to Promote Moderate Islam

According to a report carried by Morocco World News, 300 Muslim scholars will meet in Fez to debate issues on promoting moderate Islam

The higher council of the Mohammed VI Foundation for African Ulemas (scholars) will hold a meeting from December 8 to 10 in Morocco’s spiritual capital Fez, bringing together 300 ulemas from all over the continent as part of its religious diplomacy in Africa.

In an official statement released by the foundation, the meeting will be devoted to examining the foundation’s action plan for 2018, as well as to debating major themes such as the values of moderate Islam and the shared African cultural heritage.

This regular session will see the participation of 300 Islamic scholars from 32 African countries where the foundation is represented. More than 80 women will take part of the meeting, 20 of whom are Moroccan.

The work of the Council will bring focus on two axes. The first will concern the adoption of the objectives fixed in article 4 of the Dahir, which are the preservation of the common religious and spiritual constants between Morocco and the African countries, the promotion of the authentic rules of Sharia and the principles of tolerant Islam, the revitalization of the common African Islamic cultural heritage, and the consolidation of the historical relations that bind Morocco to other African countries.

The second axis of this meeting will focus on the examination and voting of the annual draft program for the year 2018 and the process of implementation of the work of the four standing committees in accordance with article 18 of the Dahir, namely the Committee for Scientific and Cultural Activities, the Sharia Studies Committee, the Revitalization of African Islamic Heritage Committee and the Communication, Cooperation and Partnership Committee.

As part of its religious diplomacy in Africa, Morocco continues to promote its moderate version of Islam as a bulwark against extremism and establishes itself as leader, providing training for the hundreds of imams from Africa.

In 2015, Morocco created the religious institute, Mohammed VI Foundation for African Ulemas, in order to promote a tolerant Islam and curb the growing threat of terrorism.

The religious institute aims to unite religious scholars and imams of the kingdom with those in other African countries in an effort to serve the interests of Islam. It advocates tolerance and promote research and studies in Islamic thought and culture.

Under the supervision of King Mohammed VI, the institute intends to inculcate the values of moderate Islam as it has always been practiced in Morocco (based on the Ashaari doctrine and the Malikite school of jurisprudence) to the new generations of imams and preachers.


Morocco: + 9% increase in tourist arrivals

A total of 9.7 million tourists visited Morocco between January and October 2017, an increase of + 9% compared to the same period last year, says the Tourism Observatory

The number of foreign tourists (TES) increased by + 14%, while the arrivals of Moroccans living abroad (MRE) increased by 5%, says the Observatory of Tourism which has just published its statistics on the Moroccan tourism covering the first 10 months of 2017.

This rise affected the main issuing markets, in particular Germany (14%), Holland (8%) and France (7%), according to the same source. As for emerging tourism markets for Morocco, they maintain their upward trend, with China recording a 203% increase, while Japan, South Korea, the United States and Brazil posted respective increases of 40%. %, 33%, 30% and 51%. The total nights spent in classified tourist accommodation establishments recorded a 15% increase during the first 10 months of 2017 (+ 19% for non-resident tourists and + 8% for residents).

The two tourist hubs of Marrakesh and Agadir alone generated 60% of total overnight stays at the end of May, the Observatory said, noting that these two cities experienced an increase of 18% and 12%, respectively. Other destinations also performed well, especially the cities of Fez and Tangier with respective increases of 37% and 26%. Occupancy rate until the end of October 2017,  reached 44%, up 4 points over the same period last year.

In addition, revenues generated by tourism activity by non-residents in Morocco amounted to MAD 59.2 billion (MMDH) at the end of October 2017, compared with MAD 56.1 billion a year earlier, an increase of 5%, 4%. During the month of October, the number of tourist arrivals at the border posts increased by 15% compared to the same month of 2016 (+ 24% for the TES and + 1% for the MRE).

With its political stability and notable economic progress, Morocco did well in the latest survey of the Intermat Construction Observatory. It is at the head of a ranking of the most attractive countries of the African continent.

The results of the analysis were previewed this Wednesday in Casablanca, at a conference dedicated to the presentation of the International Exhibition of Construction and Infrastructure, scheduled for April 23 to 28, 2018 in Paris with the participation from Morocco. Morocco has emerged as the most attractive country on the continent out of a dozen countries with high potential.