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PRESENTATION OF CCDH WORK IN THE FIELD OF ARCHIVE, MEMORY AND HISTORY

The Equity and Reconciliation Commission (IER) recommended the preservation of all national archives, the coordination of their organization and the promulgation of a law identifying their preservation conditions, delays during which they should be accessible and available for the public, accessibility conditions and sanctions due to their destruction.

Entrusted with the follow-up of the implementation of the IER’s recommendations, the Advisory Council on Human Rights (CCDH) has kept working on the subject and helped prepare Archive Law # 99/69. It formed a working group composed of experts and specialists to embark on the following areas:

 Publication, generalization and pedagogical simplification of the contemporary history of Morocco;

 Creation of a Master course in human rights;

 Creation of a documentation center on the contemporary history of Morocco;

 Creation of a National Museum of History;

 Conceptualization of awareness-raising campaigns regarding history among new generations;

 Memory and community reparation program.

The Council signed a partnership agreement with the Moroccan Cinema Centre to promote human rights culture and encourage film productions relative to the conservation of memory and past serious human rights violations. This convention stipulates:

 The adoption of human rights values and principles as a criterion for the selection of films eligible to benefit from the support of the production fund;

 Support documentaries and short films on human rights, Moroccan contemporary history and memory of past grave human rights violations;

 The inclusion of documentaries relating to the above-mentioned axes within the list of films eligible to benefit from the support of the production fund;

 Support the Mediterranean Meetings on Cinema and Human Rights organized by the Council;

 Sensitize film creators to contribute to the promotion of human rights culture;

 Make the archive of the Center accessible for researchers and creators and work in coordination with the Council to enable them to access this archive and use it in accordance with the conditions determined by the parties.

In order to strengthen the already made efforts regarding the issue of archive in Morocco, the Council organized in April 2009 a workshop on the following theme: “For a national contemporary archive”.

This workshop brought together archive producers, from public, semi-public and private institutions, media, political parties, unions, associations and non-governmental organizations ..., those in charge of archives, specialists, interested people, direct users of archives, researchers, journalists, historians and jurists. It aimed to open discussion on the importance of archives. It underlined the importance and need of maintaining the archive, participating in the conception and suggestion of regulatory texts of the archive law and adopting a strategic vision for the establishment of a national archive institution.

It was a space for joint reflections on the types of challenges posed by modern technologies in relation to the conservation and maintenance of the virtual archive in the context of fast transformations of information technology. It was an opportunity to discuss the use of modern technologies to facilitate appropriate use of its capabilities.

The Council also organized several seminars on “Education and contemporary history”, “Preservation and update of the National Archive”, “Memory, history and archive”, “Memory preservation projects under the community reparation program”, etc. The Working Group on memory and history, created by the Council, has made many achievements in this area. It organized several regional meetings on the subject of memory, particularly how to deal with the former secret detention centers.

As regards the archive of the Equity and Reconciliation Commission (IER), the Council makes a general inventory for this archive and sets a vision of an information system for its planning, as an important phase precedent to its restructuring, treatment, preservation and accessibility.

The Council will launch a cooperation program with the European Union, which expressed its support for the Commission's recommendations in the areas of archive, history and memory. In the area of archive, in particular, this program will help keeping up with activities relating to the preservation of the archive of the Equity and Reconciliation Commission and supporting the modernization of the National Archive.

The Council, the Ministry of Economy and Finance and the Delegation of the European Commission signed in November 2009 a convention to finance the implementation of the IER’s recommendations in the field of history and memory.

With a budget of 8 million Euros, this program will support the Council, entrusted with the follow-up of the implementation of the IER’s recommendations, in its relevant activities:

- Preserving the archives of the Equity and Reconciliation Commission and the archive of the Council, regarding the period between 1956 and 1999 and facilitating access to them;

- Developing a national strategy to reorganize and update the Archive;

- Encouraging historical research on the aforesaid period;

- Spreading knowledge obtained on the Moroccan contemporary history;

- Supporting activities relative to the preservation of memory.

The Council signed in January 2010 a cooperation convention with the University of Mohammed V – Agdal to create a Master course in contemporary history in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities. Concluded within the framework of the IER’s recommendations, this convention aims to encourage research regarding Moroccan contemporary history and form expertise in the field of contemporary history and memory of Morocco after independence, through the creation of this course.

By virtue of this convention, the Council is committed to support this Master course and encourage, in particular, research regarding contemporary history, especially in the field of investigation, buying books treating contemporary history and inviting lecturers of contemporary history from foreign institutes and universities.

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