Authored by Peace Corps
Berbers were the original inhabitants of Morocco, followed by the Carthaginians and Romans. Arabs conquered Morocco in 683, bringing with them Islam. By the 11th century, a Berber empire ruled over all of northwest Africa, including Morocco and most of Spain. Up until the 20th century, a succession of native dynasties ruled what is now Morocco. In 1904, French and Spanish colonists occupied parts of Morocco, establishing protectorates in 1912.
Morocco became a sovereign country in 1956 when France and Spain recognized its independence. It was ruled by King Mohammed V until his death on February 26, 1961. His son, Hassan II, then ascended to the throne.
On November 6, 1975, tens of thousands of Moroccans crossed the border, in a “Green March” into the Spanish Sahara to back their government’s contention that the northern part of the territory was historically part of Morocco. Spain withdrew from the territory in 1975.
King Hassan II was the second Arab leader to meet with an Israeli leader and was active in promoting peace in the Middle East. King Hassan II died in July 1999, after reigning for more than 37 years. He was succeeded by his son, Mohammed VI. The current king, born in 1963, has taken courageous measures to improve political, economic, and social conditions in the country. Dubbed the “King of the Poor” by the French and the local press, King Mohammed VI is keen on improving the quality of life in rural areas, raising the social and legal status of women, and alleviating poverty. These reforms have gained him great popularity among the people and made the country attractive to foreign investment. In April 2002, the king married Salma Bennani, a computer engineer, who is perceived as a force for the promotion of women’s issues. Their first child and son, the future successor to the king, Prince Moulay Hassan, was born in May 2003. A daughter, named Khadija, was born in March 2007.
Sep 13 2014
1502356635 / 9781502356635
US Trade Paper
8.5″ x 11″
Black and White
Travel / General