|Kingdom of Morocco|
الله، الوطن، الملك (Arabic)
Allāh, al-Waṭan, al-Malik
ⴰⴽⵓⵛ, ⴰⵎⵓⵔ, ⴰⴳⵍⵍⵉⴷ (Tamazight)"God, Homeland, King"
Akuc, Amur, Agllid
النشيد الوطني المغربي (Arabic)
Dark red: Internationally recognized territory of Morocco.
Lighter striped red:
• Prime Minister
|House of Councillors|
|House of Representatives|
|March 2, 1956|
|April 7, 1956|
|446,550 km2 (172,410 sq mi)[f] or 710,850 km2 [f] (|
• Water (%)
|0.056 (250 km2)|
• 2013 estimate
|73.1/km2 (189.3/sq mi) (122nd)|
|$181.9 billion (|
• Per capita
|$107.1 billion (|
• Per capita
|Currency||Moroccan dirham (|
• Summer (
Morocco has a population of over 33.8 million and an area of 446,550 km2(172,410 sq mi). Its capital is
Morocco claims the non-self-governing territory of
Morocco is a
Morocco's predominant religion is Islam, and the official languages are
The Berber Roman client King Ptolemy of Mauretania.
The area of present-day Morocco has been inhabited since
North Africa and Morocco were slowly drawn into the wider emerging
Ancient Roman ruins of Volubilis.
Morocco later became a realm of the North African civilisation of
crisis of the 3rd century, parts of Mauretania were reconquered by Berber tribes. Direct Roman rule became confined to a few coastal cities (such as
Muslim conquest of the Maghreb, that started in the middle of the 7th century, was
achieved early into the following century. It brought both the Arabic language and
The indigenous Berber tribes adopted Islam, but retained their
customary laws. They also paid taxes and tribute to the new Muslim administration. The first independent Muslim state in the area of modern Morocco was the
Kingdom of Nekor, an emirate in the
Rif Mountains. It was founded by
Salih I ibn Mansur in 710, as a client state to the
According to medieval legend,
Idris ibn Abdallah had fled to Morocco after the Abbasids' massacre of his tribe in Iraq. He convinced the Awraba Berber tribes to break their allegiance to the distant Abbasid caliphs in
The Almohad realm at its greatest extent, c. 1212
From the 11th century onwards, a series of powerful Berber dynasties arose. Under the
On another note and according to Elizabeth Allo Isichei, "In 1520, there was a
Morocco, Safi ceramic vessel Jobbana
Former Portuguese fortress of Mazagan in El Jadida
In 1549, the region fell to successive Arab dynasties claiming descent from the
Under the Saadi Dynasty, the country repulsed
In 1666, Morocco was reunited by the
Alaouite Dynasty, who have been the ruling house of Morocco ever since. Morocco was facing aggression from
Morocco was the first nation to recognise the fledgling United States as an independent nation in 1777. In the beginning of the
Main articles: French Morocco and Spanish Protectorate in Morocco
As Europe industrialised, North Africa was increasingly prized for its potential for colonisation. France showed a strong interest in Morocco as early as 1830, not only to protect the border of its Algerian territory, but also because of the strategic position of Morocco on two oceans. In 1860, a dispute over Spain's Ceuta enclave led Spain to declare war. Victorious Spain won a further enclave and an enlarged Ceuta in the settlement. In 1884, Spain created a protectorate in the coastal areas of Morocco.
In 1904, France and Spain carved out zones of influence in Morocco. Recognition by the
Tens of thousands of colonists entered Morocco. Some bought up large amounts of the rich agricultural land, others organised the exploitation and modernisation of mines and harbours. Interest groups that formed among these elements continually pressured France to increase its control over Morocco – a control which was also made necessary by the continuous wars among Moroccan tribes, part of which had taken sides with the French since the beginning of the conquest. Governor general, Marshall
Hubert Lyautey, sincerely admired Moroccan culture and succeeded in imposing a joint Moroccan-French administration, while creating a modern school system. Several divisions of Moroccan soldiers (
Goumiers or regular troops and officers) served in the
French army in both
Between 1921 and 1926, a Berber uprising in the Rif Mountains, led by Abd el-Krim, led to the establishment of the Republic of the Rif. The rebellion was eventually suppressed by French and Spanish troops.
In 1943, the Istiqlal Party (Independence Party) was founded to press for independence, with discreet US support. That party subsequently provided most of the leadership for the nationalist movement.
France's exile of
Sultan Mohammed V in 1953 to
The Mausoleum of Mohammed V in Rabat.
Upon the death of Mohammed V, Hassan II became King of Morocco on 3 March 1961. Morocco held its first general elections in 1963. However, Hassan declared a state of emergency and suspended parliament in 1965. In 1971, there was a failed attempt to depose the king and establish a republic. A truth commission set up in 2005 to investigate human rights abuses during his reign confirmed nearly 10,000 cases, ranging from death in detention to forced exile. Some 592 people were recorded killed during Hassan's rule according to the truth commission.
Moroccan and Algerian troops soon clashed in Western Sahara. Morocco and Mauritania divided up Western Sahara. Fighting between the Moroccan military and Polisario forces continued for many years. The prolonged war was a considerable financial drain on Morocco. In 1983, Hassan cancelled planned elections amid political unrest and economic crisis. In 1984, Morocco left the Organisation of African Unity in protest at the
Algerian authorities have estimated the number of Sahrawi refugees in Algeria to be 165,000. Diplomatic relations with Algeria were restored in 1988. In 1991, a UN-monitored ceasefire began in Western Sahara, but the territory's status remains undecided and ceasefire violations are reported. The following decade saw much wrangling over a proposed referendum on the future of the territory but the deadlock was not broken.
Political reforms in the 1990s resulted in the establishment of a bicameral legislature in 1997 and Morocco's first opposition-led government came to power in 1998.
King Hassan II died in 1999 and was succeeded by his son, Mohammed VI. He is a cautious moderniser who has introduced some economic and social liberalisation.
Mohammed VI paid a controversial visit to the Western Sahara in 2002. Morocco unveiled an autonomy blueprint for Western Sahara to the United Nations in 2007. The Polisario rejected the plan and put forward its own proposal. Morocco and the Polisario Front held UN-sponsored talks in New York but failed to come to any agreement. In 2010, security forces stormed a protest camp in the Western Sahara, triggering violent demonstrations in the regional capital
In 2002, Morocco and Spain agreed to a US-brokered resolution over the disputed island of Perejil. Spanish troops had taken the normally uninhabited island after Moroccan soldiers landed on it and set up tents and a flag. There were renewed tensions in 2005 as hundreds of African migrants tried to storm the borders of the Spanish enclaves of Melilla and Ceuta. Morocco deported hundreds of the illegal migrants. In 2006 the Spanish Premier Zapatero visited Spanish enclaves. He was the first Spanish leader in 25 years to make an official visit to the territories. The following year, Spanish King
2011–12 Moroccan protests, thousands of people rallied in Rabat and other cities calling for political reform and a new constitution curbing the powers of the king. In July 2011, the King won a landslide victory in a referendum on a reformed constitution he had proposed to placate the