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Berbers of Morocco: Amazigh New Year is now an official public holiday

Another step towards the recognition of the Berbers. On Wednesday, the King of Morocco decided to make the Amazigh (Berber) New Year an official paid holiday, a decision long demanded by Amazigh activists, according to a royal cabinet statement.

King Mohammed VI has “decided to make Amazigh New Year an official paid national holiday,” the royal cabinet said in a statement. The Amazigh New Year (Yennayer) is celebrated every year on 13 January in this country, which has the most Berbers in the Maghreb.

The Amazigh language was recognized in 2011 as an official language, along with Arabic, in the Constitution after decades of activists fighting for the cause.

The emergence of the Tifinagh alphabet

In 2019, an organic law was passed to generalize the Amazigh language. This text defines its use in administration, local government and public services, its teaching in schools and its use in cultural life.

One of the most notable effects of this formalization was the appearance of the Tifinagh alphabet on public buildings, in addition to Arabic and French.

Since 2010, the Moroccan public television channel Tamazight TV has been promoting Amazigh culture. But Amazigh activists have criticized the slow adoption of the language, especially in education.

Source: Le Parisien

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