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Moroccan markets revived with Amazigh New Year celebrations

The Moroccan city Oujda witnessed an active commercial movement after Amazighs celebrated the Amazigh New Year.
(Photo by: Andia/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

The Amazighs celebrated the Amazigh New Year, also known as “Yennayer“, on January 13, for the year 2971 according to the Amazigh calendar.

The Amazigh calendar precedes the Gregorian calendar by 950 years.

The Moroccan city Oujda witnessed an active commercial movement due to the celebrations after the recession caused by the Coronavirus.

Amazighs tend to celebrate this special occasion by serving nuts, almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts and other dry fruits, with Moroccan tea and other special foods.

The Amazigh people preserved the celebration of this occasion, which they inherited from their ancestors hundreds of years ago. The annual occasion represents a new hope for a new and more abundant season

The agricultural year

This occasion is also called the agricultural year, for its attachment to the calendar farmers use to determine planting, watering and harvesting. Celebrations of this occasion continue until the last week of January of each year.

Amazigh history and culture specialist Sherif Adradak says, “Amazigh have preserved this calendar because it is linked to the agricultural cycle, which they developed it over time”.

Member of the Amazigh Network for Citizenship, Muhammad Bali, said, “most North Africa regions celebrate the occasion with local agricultural products”.

Citizens hope torrential rains falling during the last week will contribute to the growth of various crops, especially cereal crops.

According to historians, Yennayer symbolizes the farmers’ celebrations of land and agriculture.

Celebration activities include lectures and various academic activities to introduce this civilization and its history and discuss issues related to the Amazigh, their concerns, their culture and their place in their societies.

Despite the health situation in Morocco, and continued imposition of emergency due to the Coronavirus outbreak, the occasion was celebrated. However, gatherings were avoided to prevent the spread of the infection.

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