Dr. Salim M. AlMalik, Director-General (DG) of the Islamic World Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (ICESCO), reaffirmed that the Organization’s new strategic cultural plan pays great attention to the human tangible and intangible cultural heritage. The DG added that “ICESCO’s efforts aim to ensure heritage management and preservation through modern mechanisms and appropriate strategies to publicize the successful experiences in conserving and sustaining heritage to serve as a lever for cultural and socio-economic development in the Islamic world.”
The statement was part of Dr. AlMalik’s address at the opening ceremony of the First Celebration of the International Day of Argania that the UN General Assembly adopted on March 3rd, 2021, at the initiative of Morocco and with the support of UN Member States. The celebration was organized at the Faculty of Science, Mohammed V University, in Rabat, under the theme “Three decades of research and development for sustainable development of the Argan tree,” yesterday, May 10, 2021, with the participation of Dr. Saaïd Amzazi, Minister of National Education, Vocational Training, Higher Education and Scientific Research; Dr. Mohamed Ghachi, President of Mohammed V University; and Dr. Mohammed El Ragragui, Dean of the Faculty of Science of Mohammed V University, as well as a host of researchers and experts in the field.
Dr. AlMalik praised Morocco’s initiative to preserve the Argan tree, which is a new achievement added to its accomplishments in preserving its environmental and architectural treasures, defending its socio-cultural symbols, and promoting its tangible and intangible heritage. The initiative reaffirms the strong international support for the Moroccan national strategy, entitled “Forests of Morocco” that His Majesty King Mohammed VI launched, and which includes an ambitious project to plant 10,000 argan trees over a six-year period.
ICESCO DG also stated that the Organization will support women’s enterprises in Morocco, particularly women’s agricultural cooperatives in rural areas, including the argan cooperatives. Such support, he stated, is part of the Organization’s proclamation of 2021 as the Year of Women, which includes many programmes and activities to enhance the participation of women in building the future and achieving sustainable development and falls within the framework of its partnership with the Alwaleed Philanthropies.
At the close of his address, Dr. Al-Malik called on the competent authorities in Morocco to submit the file of the Argan tree for its inscription on the Islamic World Intangible Cultural Heritage List, stressing that ICESCO is fully prepared to support the scientific research works relevant to the tree.