Rif Republic

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Rif Republic


a state (1921–26) that was created in Morocco during the anti-imperialist struggle of the Rif tribes of Morocco for national liberation, which took place after Russia’s Great October Socialist Revolution.

The republic was a military and political association of tribes living in the Rif Mountains of northern Morocco. The supreme legislative and executive powers were exercised by the National Assembly, which was headed by the president, or emir, Abd al-Karim. The republic had a five-member government. The local administrative unit was a tribe headed by a kaid and a community council, or jamaah. The kaids were subordinate to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Council for Tribal Affairs.

The revenue from special taxes, for example a poll tax and a tax on personal income, was used for the needs of the army. For a long time the Rif Republic successfully fought off Spanish and French troops, defeating them repeatedly. The republic fell on May 27, 1926, under the united onslaught of the Spanish and French armies.


Frunze, M. V. “Evropeiskie tsivilizatory i Marokko.” Izbr. proizv., vol. 2, Moscow, 1957.
Lutskaia, N. S. Respublika Rif. Moscow, 1959. (Bibliography.)
Semard, P. Voina v Marokko. London, 1925. (Translated from French.)
Muhammed al-Alami. Zaim al-Rif Muhammad Abd al-Karim al-Khattabi (The Leader of Rif Mohammed Abd al-Karim …). Casablanca, 1968.
Gabrielli, L. Abd el-Krim et les événements du Rif (1924–26). Casablanca [1953].


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
There was no way King Hassan was going to play any part in transforming a Berber prince, whose Rif republic lasted five years, into a national hero.
As soon as the royal motorcade left, defiant youths vowed, in Tamarzight of course, never to abandon their aspirations for a Rif republic.