Unprecedented snowfall isolates 87 villages, leaving 24 000 families in need of assistance, Morocco

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A severe snowstorm wreaked havoc in Morocco’s southeast region on February 18 and 19, 2023, leaving 24 000 families in dire need of assistance and 87 villages isolated. The unprecedented levels of snowfall have led to road closures and the suspension of classes, while authorities and troops work tirelessly to provide aid to those in need.

A massive snowstorm in Morocco’s southeast region has left 24 000 families in dire need of assistance, as well as 87 villages that have been isolated, particularly in the Ouarzazate and Zagora regions. The storm has led to unprecedented levels of snowfall, with some areas receiving up to 2.2 m (7.2 feet) of snow, leading to road closures and the suspension of classes.

Despite the bad weather conditions, Moroccan troops have been working tirelessly to access the affected areas, and an airlift has been set up to deliver humanitarian aid teams to the people in need. Volunteer doctors from Rabat and other locations will be sent to assist, and medicines will be distributed to the affected population.

King Mohammed VI has given instructions to speed up the delivery of aid to the villages affected by the storm, and the authorities are working with the Royal Gendarmerie and the Royal Armed Forces to ensure that everyone who needs assistance receives it.

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Image credit: NASA Aqua/MODIS. Acquired on February 19, 2023

On February 20, the General Directorate of Meteorology issued an orange alert for snowfall of up to 20 cm (7.9 inches) in the highest areas of the provinces of Haouz, Taroudant, Ouarzazate, and Tinghir, which are popular tourist destinations.

Predictions said the snow could reach nearly 2 m (6.4 feet) by midday Tuesday, February 21. The list of provinces set to see snowfall includes Al Haouz, Taroudant, Ouarzazate, and Tinghir.

Despite the humanitarian concerns, news of heavy snowfall and even floods come as a pleasant change from last’s year drought. Moroccans are optimistic that the return of the rain will relieve some of the concerns surrounding water shortage and agriculture yield this year.


1 Snowstorm in Morocco leaves 87 villages isolated and 24,000 people in need of assistance – Atalayar – February 20, 2023

2 Snowfall to Hit Several Provinces Across Morocco – Morocco World News – February 19, 2023

Featured image credit: NASA Aqua/MODIS. Acquired on February 19, 2023


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