Rallyes are programmed for Ottawa, Montreal and Boston. At the same time there is also a rallye in Paris.
For more information on the rallye in Paris, plase visit tamazgha.fr
Location: Parliament Hill
Date & time: Saturday 12/17/11 at 2:00 PM
Location: In front of Radio-Television Canada
Date & time: Sunday 12/18/11 at 11 AM
New York City, USA
Location Central Park (59th St & 5th Ave)
Date & time: Saturday 12/17/11 at 1:00 PM
Location: Boston Common
Date & time: Saturday 12/17/11 at 12:00 AM
Below this text are fliers for each location and a press release by BAC.
The Amazigh people of Libya played a leading role in the fall of the Gaddafi dictatorship. They brought the Amazigh culture and language to the forefront by making it an important part of their struggle. They fought as Imazighen [Free People] and insisted that all Libyans and the rest of the world know this critical fact. Nobody can ignore the crucial role they played in freeing Libya from the claws of a mad dictator. The NTC [National Transitional Council] took over the reins of government from him. This junta did not waste any time in unveiling their real face vis-à-vis Imazighen. They did not only exclude the Amazigh component from the new interim government. No. They actually granted a ministerial position to an individual who made racist statements against Imazighen at an August meeting of the NTC.
The Imazighen say they are not prepared to negotiate the status the Amazigh language and culture will have in Libya. They rejected the new government and withdrew their representatives from the NTC. They made their demands clear. Since November 23, they have been out in the streets of Tripoli and throughout the Amazigh region to denounce the new Libyan government and the NTC, which they describe as racist. Imazighen played a crucial role in the overthrow of Gaddafi. So, they have earned the right to sit at the Libyan table. How can any government claim legitimacy without them? Their fight will continue until justice is done.
The Amazigh people of Libya are giving us the best example of determination in the fight to preserve the Amazigh culture. The world must show its support and not forget the struggle of and the discrimination against this courageous people. In particular, we are calling on the Amazigh associations, organizations, and activists worldwide to mobilize and show their support for this noble cause. It is crucial that we stand beside the Amazigh people of Libya. We want them to know they are not alone. We must be together in any issue that concerns our identity. December 17 has been designated as the international day of solidarity with the Amazigh people of Libya and to denounce any attempt by the NTC to bury the aspirations of this brave people. No more dictatorship in Libya. We also take this opportunity to denounce all the past government attempts throughout North Africa to bury the Amazigh people's dreams for freedom and justice.
Join us on December 17. Let us fly the flag of peace, true democracy, and justice and show our Amazigh brothers and sisters in Libya that we are with them. No more racist dictatorship in Libya.
The North American Support Committee for the Amazigh of Libya
The Amazigh Cultural Association in America
The Berber American Community
Following the publication of the draft constitutional revision of the Moroccan monarchy, to be submitted to a referendum on 1 July 2011, the public opinion is divided especially concerning the introduction of Tamazight as an official language.
Beyond the lack of clarity on the terms of the "formalization" of Tamazight, the text remains faithful to the constants that are so dear to the Arab-Muslim monarchy.
We publish below the reaction of the Amazigh Observatory of Rights and Freedoms (Observatoire amazigh des droits et libértés, OADL), and the editor at Tamazgha.fr will certainly come back on this new trickery ...
Regarding the proposed new constitution submitted to referendum
The draft of the new constitution examined by OADL (French acronym for Observatoire amazigh des droits et libertés, Amazigh Observatory of Rights and Freedoms) will be submitted on 1 July to a referendum. Based upon its contents and following the royal speech that followed the publication, all supporting bodies of the Amazigh movement and the national and international public opinion must be informed that:
1 - The anti-democratic method used for developing the draft document, written by the committee on the revision of the constitution followed by a team chaired by Mouatassim, resulted in something that was no surprise: a project put together in a sealed atmosphere, characterized by ambiguity, confusion and lack of transparency and visibility. At the end of this process, the relevant forces of the nation have been deliberately excluded. As for the Moroccan political parties, they were simply set aside and placed in a humiliating position of inferiority. The commission, which refused them access to the project during its development, gave them less than 24 hours to make their remarks. The final text of the constitution was drawn up secretly without any real consultation and strictly under the adviser to the king. The ultimate goal of the authorities is to scandalously rush the new constitution to a referendum and at the same time refuse the right to anyone to discuss its final content. Also, OADL strongly condemns the fact that some archaic conservative parties have been mobilized by the authorities, towards the end of the writing of the constitution, to counter the claims of the country’s democratic forces and undermine all new the articles of the constitution.
2 - The final constitutional text submitted to referendum is a revision that seems at first to provide a set of rights, but it is in fact a continuation of the principles that have always been the fertile crucible of the absolutist and arbitrary political traditions, with no change to the nature of the regime and the institutional architecture in which the king reigns and governs forever and gives himself excessive powers; as a result, no "gains" are real, because everything was done to hinder them. No business renewal has been made that could disrupt current practices and impact the governance of the country. As a Consequence, Morocco, while still in a serious situation and tense political climate, is about to miss its chance; a rendezvous with history. Parliamentary monarchy, as claimed, will not see the day.
3 - It goes without saying that the formalization of the Amazigh language is an asset and an important step forward. This is the fruit of the enormous sacrifices made by generations of activists in the Amazigh cause in Morocco, and their allies in civil and political national organizations. However, the configuration used lends itself to many interpretations. In fact, the fact that the formalization of Arabic and Tamazight appears in two separate paragraphs suggests that there is definitely a hierarchical relationship between a first official language, Arabic, and a second one, Tamazight. As a language is closely linked to the identity of its people, the unfortunate results of the new constitution divide Moroccans into two distinct categories: first-class citizens and second class citizens.
4 - The evocation of a constitutional law defining "the process of implementation of our language’s official character and the terms of its integration in the school system and of public daily life priorities" makes us wonder legitimately after decades of violation of our dignity and events of the past and present, which taught us to be careful. Will this new law reconsider everything and start all over from scratch? Or will it take into account the gains made in recent years, particularly in the teaching of Tamazight, despite all the obstacles due to lack of legal protection of this language? How long will the new process take, and with what budget? It seems that an inevitable and even harder struggle still awaits defenders of Amazigh language and culture.
5 - The constitutionality of all consultative bodies set up by the king before, and the exclusion of the official institution dedicated to the Amazigh (IRCAM) from this institutional list draws our attention and makes us question the real intent in the management of Tamazight.
6 - The constitutionality of the Moroccan identity dimensions as stipulated in the constitution, "its unity, forged by the convergence of its Arab-Islamic components, Amazigh and Sahraro-Hassani, was fed by its African, Andalusian, Hebrew and Mediterranean tributaries", has not met the specifics on the Amazigh language nor did it respect the chronological order in the statement, knowing that Tamazight is the first and native component. It also eclipses our African roots, which were mentioned as a mere tributary.
7 - The new constitution totally ignores Morocco‘s land ties to Africa; it reduces the connection with our African continent to the "relations of cooperation and solidarity with the peoples of Africa”. On the other hand, it claims our "belonging to the Arab-Islamic Ummah", thus denying the historical and geographical realities of our country. This makes us lose all ability to take advantage of far greater geographical and civilizational assets than those related to the Middle East.
8 – The removal from the final version of the constitution of the part dealing with the civil character of the State and the freedom of conscience, which are the very bases of any constitution of a democratic society, is in itself a real failure in this new constitution. Especially, the specific "Islamic character" of the State contradicts the commitment to respect and comply with international standards on domestic jurisdictions. No effort is made by the Muslim legal experts to understand and benefit from the important stakes of modern life.
9 - Although the new constitution contains some progress, including a number of rights and freedoms, it falls short of the aspirations of the public as they have been clearly expressed by the movement of 20 February. Our civil society and progressive political parties have a duty to continue their struggle to build a truly democratic and modern society based on the principles of freedom, equality, justice and dignity, and on a contract that is dedicated once and for all to popular sovereignty.
Rabat, 17 Juine 2011
For an English traslation of the new constitution, visit the following link:
The original French and Arabic versions can be dowloaded right here, Click on the Adobe Pdf icon below to download it.
As part of the political and social dynamics faced by Morocco in the same way as the people who rise against tyranny, exclusion and contempt for human dignity, and in response to developments within these dynamics at the national level, the Amazigh coordination, associations and personalities of Central Morocco met in Meknes on June 12, 2011 at the headquarters of the Tafilalet Meknes Region. After reviewing the situation, they publicly declare the following:
1 – Their rejection of any constitution that does not recognize the Amazigh identity of Morocco, an identity that is open to all cultural contributions, which does not assert in its preamble and in a separate article that the Amazigh language is an official language without conditioning its integration in all areas of public life by the passage of an organizational or operational legislation;
2-Their attachment to the promulgation of a democratic constitution that is derived from the people, and that consecrates the separation of powers and guarantees human rights;
3 – Their demand that "azref" (Amazigh Law) be considered one of the sources of national law;
4-Their condemnation of the campaign waged against the Amazigh identity of Morocco by pseudo parties and intellectuals who grew up in the lap of Arab Baathist and Nasserite nationalism;
5-Their preference for a federal system based on the principle of sociocultural and economic complementarity
6-Their request for the repeal of all laws inherited from colonialism and the enactment of national legislation guaranteeing the entitled the right to recover their plundered lands and natural resources;
7 – Their insistence that all prisoners of the Amazigh cause be released with Hamid Aâdouch and Mostapha Oussaya at the head of the list;
8-Their demand that the security services take responsibility for the safety of students in the universities against attacks from groups with no connection to University life;
La Coordination Amyafa des associations du Centre du Maroc
L’Organisation de la Jeunesse Amazighe
APMM Morocco Section
L’Association feminine Tifsa pour la culture et le développement
L’Association Tamunt Tazuta
L’Association Aman Fès
L’Association Amghar Khénifra
L’Association Izriran Midelt
L’Association Afrough Sidi Elmakhfi
L’Association Tamunt Ait Ali Boulmane
L’Association Tanchri Sefrou
L’Association Tamazight Khénifra
L’Association Tawada Sefrou
L’Association Al amal Timhdit
L’Association Tifsa Méknès
L’Association Amjjam Méknès
L’Association Amnay Ain Leuh
L’Association Azriman Taza
L’Association Amnayn Midelt
L’Association Tawnza Tunfit
L’Association Amnay Ifrane
L’Association Mounazzeh Midelt
L’Association Tizi Ifris
L’Association Dadess Tinghir
This is a press release by Tamazgha and Afafa associations (France)
On the night of 16 to 17 December 2010, Mazigh and Madghis Bouzakhar, two brothers and activists of the Amazigh cause were abducted from their home in Tripoli by individuals of the Libyan security forces. Two days later the police raided their home again to confiscate all the books and materials that were there.
We want to denounce this arbitrary act and demand the release of Mazigh and Madghis Bouzakhar.
After a few realtively calm years, the Tamazight eradication policy seems again a priority for the Libyan regime.
Using methods from another era, The Libyan dictatorship singles out Amazigh activists and seeks to annihilate them. The Amazigh cause has seen worse and we will not stand silent in the face of what we can only be labeled as kidnappings.
We call on all activists of the Amazigh movement worldwide, to rally to denounce the kidnapping and demand the immediate release of the two activists. Mazigh and Madghis Bouzakhar have our support and we remain mobilized until their release.
We also call upon the human rights organizations, especially in North Africa, to intervene on behalf of the two activists and demand their release.
Tamazgha & AFAFA
Paris, December 20, 2010
47, rue Benard - 75014 Paris
MDA - 24, Place de la Liberté - 59100 Roubaix
Tamesmunt tamettit tadelsant Tilelli
Association Socioculturelle Tilelli
Maison de Jeunes, Goulmima (Maroc)
BP 69, Goulmima
The Sociocultural Association Tilelli, while commending the courage and strength of these two political prisoners, firmly denounces these judgments as false and repressive Makhzenian policy against the Amazigh people.
introduce into the ranks of the young Amazigh activists.
For the Executive Committee
For Immediate Release
Civil Registrars Refuse to Record Newborns Whose Names Are ‘Not Moroccan’
(Washington, DC, September 3, 2009) – Morocco should stop interfering with the right of its citizens to give Amazigh names to their children, Human Rights Watch said today.
Numerous Moroccans living in cities and villages around the kingdom and abroad who chose Amazigh first names for their newborns have been refused when they applied at local civil registrars to record those names. Human Rights Watch wrote a letter to the interior minister, Chekib Benmoussa on June 16, 2009 detailing five such cases and soliciting an explanation. There was no response.
“Morocco has taken steps to recognize Amazigh cultural rights,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “It now needs to extend that recognition to the right of parents to choose the name of their child.”
Morocco’s Law on the Civil Registry stipulates that a first name must have “a Moroccan character.” Local administrators apparently interpret that requirement to mean names that are Arabic-Islamic, even though the Amazigh people are native to Morocco. The law gives parents the right to appeal a refusal in court and to the High Commission of the Civil Registry. Over the years, the commission has ruled on dozens of Amazigh, European, and other non-Arabic-Islamic names, accepting some and rejecting others.
The five cases documented in the Human Rights Watch letter, involving both residents of Morocco and émigrés living abroad, resulted ultimately in victories for the parents. But they succeeded only after bureaucratic delays and lengthy appeals, sometimes enduring hostile or humiliating questions from Moroccan civil servants and the insecurity of having a newborn who, for months, had no legal identity.
“We are happy that these parents prevailed, but no couple should have to fight their government, at this special time in their life, to be able to name their baby,” Whitson said.
On August 26, a first instance court in Tahla (province of Taza) court approved an Amazigh name in a sixth case, allowing Abdallah Bouchnaoui and Jamila Aarrach, to name their five-month-old daughter “Tiziri,” which means “moon” in Tamazight, the Amazigh language. The victory came only after the couple, who live in the commune of Zerarda in the Middle Atlas, had endured months of uncertainty.
For a seventh couple, the uncertainty continues. On March 11, Rachid Mabrouky went to the civil registry in the Saâda district of Marrakesh to register his two-day-old daughter as “Gaïa.” Mabrouky told Human Rights Watch that the official on duty refused to accept the name, contending that it was “not Moroccan.” Mabrouky went to the civil registry at the city’s prefecture, only to be told the same thing.
When he explained that the name “Gaïa” was Amazigh and therefore Moroccan, the agent on duty persisted in his refusal, exclaiming, “You Amazigh are all fanatics,” Mabrouky said. Mabrouky and his wife, Lucile Zerroust, who is French, filed a case in administrative court, where the case is still pending. “Gaïa” is the name of an ancient Berber prince.
Parents of an infant who is not recorded by the civil registrar may face obstacles when applying for a passport for the child, reimbursement by state medical insurance, or other services. Parents who persist in demanding that the government record Amazigh names tend to be Amazighs who are politically active. They say that for every couple like themselves, there are others who avoid giving their children Amazigh names, fearing a humiliating refusal from local officials followed by administrative problems.
The Amazigh are the indigenous people of North Africa and are overwhelmingly Muslim. Today, the two largest Amazigh populations are in Morocco and Algeria, where some are actively engaged in seeking cultural, linguistic, and political rights. In 2001, King Mohammed VI of Morocco created a Royal Institute of Amazigh Culture and began a program to teach the Tamazight language in schools.
Several Moroccans who are Amazigh told Human Rights Watch that when civil registry agents are presented with uncommon first names, they consult lists prepared periodically by the High Commission of the Civil Registry. These lists include dozens of non-Arab-Islamic names, each one marked “accepted” or “refused.” Human Rights Watch has copies of some of these lists. According to the law, the commission is composed of representatives of the interior and justice ministries and the kingdom’s official historian.
International jurisprudence supports the freedom to choose one’s name. The United Nations’ Human Rights Committee ruled in the 1994 case of Coeriel et al v. Netherlands, “Article 17 [of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights] provides, inter alia, that no one shall be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence. The Committee considers that the notion of privacy refers to the sphere of a person’s life in which he or she can freely express his or her identity.... [This] includes the protection against arbitrary or unlawful interference with the right to choose and change one’s own name.”
“Unless a first name is patently offensive or objectionable or harmful to the interests of the child, authorities have no business curbing the right of parents to make this very personal choice – especially not when the curb amounts to a form of ethnic discrimination,” said Whitson.
Human Rights Watch’s letter to Minister of Interior Benmoussa, seeking information about the cases involving the naming of five Amazigh children – Ayyur Adam, Massine, Sifaw, Tara, and Tin-Ass – is online at: http://www.hrw.org/node/85427 (English); http://www.hrw.org/node/85429 (Arabic).
For more Human Rights Watch reporting on Morocco and Western Sahara, please visit: http://www.hrw.org/en/middle-eastn-africa/morocco/western-sahara
For more information, please contact:
In Washington, DC, Eric Goldstein (English, French): +1-917-519-4736 (mobile)
In Washington, DC, Abderrahim Sabir (Arabic, French, English): +1-202-612-4342; or +1-202-701-7654 (mobile)
The Tizi N Imnayen Student Amazigh Movement Speaks on International Mother Language Day - Alɣu n Umussu Adelsan Amaziɣ n Inelmaden n Tizi N Imnayen Ilmend n Was Amaḍlan n Tutlayt Tamezwarut
AMUSSU ADELSAN AMAZIΓ N INELMADEN G TIZI N IMNAYEN
Asmi teffeɣ Fransa si Tmurt n Lezzayer deg useggas n 1962, Leqbayel nwan dayen ifuk fell-asen lḥif, ddel d tmuḥqranit. Nnan-as, tura mi yekcem uṛumi amcum s axxam-is, talwit ad d-tekcem Tudrin n Yeqbayliyen.
ACAA's Statement Following the Commemoration of the 10th Anniversary of the Assassination of Lounes Matoub
The English Version Follows
We, members of the Amazigh Cultural Association in America (ACAA), gathered this Sunday, June 29, in Bridgwater, New Jersey to observe the 10th anniversary of the death of Lounès Matoub, make the following statement:
Download the keyboard and fonts necessary to write or visualize Tamazight on your Windows or Mac computer