Youssef Amrani, the acting Ambassador to South Africa, outlined a “unique diversity of which only Moroccans have the secret” in a virtual Q&A with Pretoria’s Alliance Francaise.
Rabat — Youssef Amrani, the acting Moroccan Ambassador to South Africa, celebrated Morocco’s culture, cuisine, and diversity in an online interview published in advance of International Francophonie Day next week.
International Francophonie Day, observed annually on March 20, is a global celebration of the French language and the diverse cultures of the “francophonie”: The term extended to the world’s 369 million French speakers.
An estimated 33% of Morocco’s population, over 12 million people, is proficient in French. According to the 2004 national census, nearly 70% of the country’s literate population can read and write in the language.
In a video posted to the Embassy’s YouTube page, Amrani answered questions about Morocco posed by the Alliance Francaise de Pretoria, a French-language school and culture center in South Africa’s executive capital city.
“[It’s] a city of plural identities, civilizational links, and cultural depths,” Amrani said of his home city of Tangier. “If love could be summed up in one word, it would be ‘Tangier.’”
The ambassador also underscored the unique harmony of tradition and modernity within Morocco, noting that one could find “the azure blue walls of the medina” mere steps away from contemporary infrastructure.
“[It] reflects the dynamism of Morocco, a country which has never ceased to move forward with confidence and serenity towards its destiny and its future,” Amrani said.
He also highlighted the cultural importance of Moroccan cuisine, calling it “one of the tastiest and finest around the world.”
“It is rich, it is perfumed, it is simply unique,” boasted Amrani. “Each Moroccan dish is a journey of the senses which dives you deeper into the Berber, Arab, Muslim, Jewish, and Saharawi variants.”
Multiculturalism was another major point of Amrani’s interview, in which he described a “unique diversity of which only Moroccans have the secret.”
“For all Moroccans, it has always been about inclusion, those of open doors and open arms,” the ambassador explained of the country’s culture. “Those virtues that Morocco has adopted in the totality of its interactions, be they social or religious, or even political or diplomatic.”
“It’s the Tangierian and the Moroccan that tell you the identity of my country is based on the core values of openness, tolerance, dialogue, and respect for differences.”