On February 29th one year ago, the Moroccan coastal town of Agadir was almost totally destroyed in an earthquake, which was accompanied by a huge tidal wave.
On February 29th one year ago, the Moroccan coastal town of Agadir was almost totally destroyed in an earthquake, which was accompanied by a huge tidal wave. Twelve thousand people were killed and over 40,000 made homeless. For loss of life it was the worst of the world's three biggest quakes of 1960.
But now, a new Agadir is being built. The town centre had been moved, and the new buildings are situated on ground where there is less danger from earth tremors and quakes. The late King Mohammed visited Agadir last June to inaugurate the reconstruction work, and King Hassan II, then Crown Prince Moulay Hassan, directed salvage and rescue operations immediately after the disaster.
A school for Moslem, French and Spanish children presents a typical scene. The children are now being taught in recently erected, prefabricated huts, while nearby stands their old school, now ruined and unusable. Industrial workers are also being housed in prefabricated homes.
For many people, the tragedy of a year ago was brought vividly to life again recently, when the bodies of 150 French victims of the earthquake were repatriated from Agadir in a ship of the French Navy. The French Ambassador and the governor of Cassablanca came to pay their last respects before the ship sailed for France.