Thursday, December 10, 2009

Moroccan News Briefs

Swine Flu (A/H1N1) deaths rise to 12

According to a statement from the Moroccan Health Ministry, two people suffering from chronic diseases died in the northern cities of Larache and Tangier from the A/H1N1 virus, bringing the death toll among the infected people to 12

The same source said that thirty new cases were documented and confirmed in Rabat, Meknès, Chefchaouen, Tangier, Oujda, Agadir, Casablanca, Khouribga and Marrakech.

Speaking at the House of Advisors' question time, Health Minister, Yasmina Baddou, said that all preventive and control measures were being taken, including Tamiflu treatment, in accordance with the department's national and sectoral strategies.

The Moroccan vaccination campaign against the A/H1N1 flu virus was launched on Wednesday in the great Casablanca region and on Thursday will be expanded to the rest of the country.

The campaign will benefit 60% of the population. Vaccines will be administered in 1258 health centers and hospitals in the rural and urban areas, the ministry said in a statement. 600 vaccination teams are mobilized for people living in remote rural zones with 2300 physicians and 7200 nurses are involved in this campaign.

Morocco and France sign fishing agreement

Morroco and France signed two fishing cooperation agreements on Monday afternoon, in Casablanca, under the framework of the new Moroccan fisheries development strategy, called Halieutis 2020, informed an official source.

The agreements were signed by the National Office for Moroccan Fisheries (ONP), FranceAgriMer (the state organisation in charge of the fishing and agriculture sectors) and the French port operating authority CEP Veolia.

The agreements, signed in the presence of the Moroccan minister of Fisheries and Agriculture, Aziz Akhannouch (pictured above), and the French ambassador in Rabat, Bruno Joubert, include numerous aspects “mainly related to the organisation and commercialisation of seafood, procedures in fishing ports and the modernisation of the sector.”

Not long ago, Morocco began implementing the Halieutis 2020 plan, whose objective is to “improve the performance and competitiveness of the sector through better management,” said the same source.

Morocco is France's 15th largest seafood supplier, exporting over 30,000 tonnes of fish and seafood to the country in 2008, according to the source.

Morocco is “dedicated to fortifying its cooperation in raw material and fishing with French private organisms,” said Majid El Ghaïb, director general of the ONP, during the signing ceremony for the agreements.

Sir Ben Kinglsey honoured at Marakech Film Festival

Born in 1943, Sir Ben Kingsley has won four major motion picture acting awards, receiving Oscar, BAFTA, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards throughout his career and so it was fitting that the 9th Marrakech International Film Festival paid a tribute to him on Wednesday.

Sir Ben Kingsley who described this privilege as an honor from a country "very close" to his heart. "Since my first visit to Morocco, where I shot six movies, I felt that this country is very special," he noted, adding "this country brings me great joy." Later he summed up by saying, "Morocco is the Hollywood of North Africa!"

"There is nothing like the Moroccan hospitality." - Sir Ben Kingsley.
Just before the ceremony, the public joined the actor to watch one of Sir Ben Kingsley's masterpieces "Ghandi" in his presence in the famous square Jamaa El Fna

Fans can watch a selection of the best movies of the British actor such as "Bugsy" by Barry Levinson (1991), "Schindler's List" of Steven Spielberg (1993), "Death and the Maiden" of Roman Polanski (1994), "Sexy Beast" of Jonathan Glazer (2000), "House of Sand and Fog" of Vadim Perelman (2003), "Oliver Twist" of Roman Polanski (2005) and "The Wackness" by Jonathan Levine (2008).

Jamie Oliver films in Morocco

Hot news for culinary buffs is that Marrakech has been selected by British Chef Jamie Oliver as one of the locations for his next television series. According to television insiders, the actor was taken with the location and has selected the up-market boutique hotel, Maison MK, as a place to film from the rooftop terrace. He had apparently been scouring the city seeing as many as 26 riads before making his selection.

The hotel, located in the heart of Marrakech, boasts both an upper and lower-roof terrace. While the former entices guests with a view of the snow-capped Atlas Mountains, the latter is transformed with orange parachute silk and flickering candlelight, to a star-gazing bar by night. Sounds just right for Jamie.

Don't expect him to cook a tagine with chicken and preserved lemons, but rather something with the more international flavour that the "red city" is becoming famous for.

No comments: