The auction for the obligatory judicial sale of the Atlas cinema located in Rawamzin street in the medina of Meknes, which was supposed to take place on Thursday morning at the commercial court of Meknes, has been postponed. After no one participated, the court decided to postpone the auction to a later date that was not disclosed.
It is possible that the campaign “Do not touch my city”, launched by many cultural actors belonging to the city is the reason for the failure of the auction. This campaign was launched in response to the decision to present the historic cinema Atlas to public auction instead of being classified by the Ministry of Culture as directly concerned with the preservation and conservation of historic cultural monuments.
It is expected that the campaign “Do not touch my city”, led by a group of intellectuals, artists and media professionals, will continue, in order to demand the classification of historical sites. In particular, the classification of the closed cinemas and their conversion into cultural vehicles under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports. The campaign, which was widely supported nationally and internationally, saw the significant participation of intellectuals, artists, media professionals, academics, researchers and people interested in the preservation of memory and heritage at the national and international levels, with over 400 signatures as of Thursday, April 22.
The signatories call for the protection of cultural sites to preserve the cultural monuments of the city of Meknes, as part of the cultural and urban heritage of the city. They also call for the ownership of closed historical cinemas by the State represented by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports or the National Initiative for Human Development or by the community of Meknes, whose cost will be very low. This, taking into account the high cost of construction and equipment of cultural vehicles, as the closed cinemas (Atlas, Apollo, Mondial, Royal) do not require more than restoration and maintenance costs. Their reopening in the form of cultural complexes will contribute to the cultural development in the city, which will have positive effects on the commercial development and revival of the tourism sector, particularly in the old town of Meknes.