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Morocco's architectural heritage under threat

Kasbah in Morocco   -  
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Traditional fortified villages in southern Morocco are under threat.

The main issue is the lack of restoration that threatens this cultural and architectural heritage.

"Those buildings are made with fragile materials, so they don't resist that much, so when it's raining it's cracking and comes down that's why we have to keep it in good condition. So the most important thing is to encourage more people to go back to live in those places and maybe make another local development and more economical things like push people to not go to the cities", explained Mohammed Oulkachire, researcher in the Kasbahs and Ksars of Ouarzazate.

Although most villages (ksars) and fortifications (kasbahs) require urgent attention, some have been restored and are now attracting tourists and new inhabitants.

This is the case of Kasbah Amridil thathas become a tourist attraction.

"Twenty years of renovations were done for this Kasbah. It happened after seeing this Kasbah almost ruined, so thanks to the family owners of this Kasbah and also tourists who always visit it, this Kasbah also helped the renovation of another Kasbah. All of this was possible because the Kasbah used to be on the 50 Dh ($5) note, it's famous", said Nasser Mohammed Mekki, manager of Kasbah Amridil.

Many of these buildings were first built during the reign of the Almoravids, an Islamic Berber dynasty, in the 11th century AD.

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