On the ground of Morocco’s earthquake, a Canadian survives—while Montreal’s community mobilizes

Some of the damage to the city's ancient buildings in the Medina quarter, on Sept. 9, 2023. (Courtesy of Seth Davis)

As rescue efforts continue in Morocco to find survivors of Friday’s powerful earthquake, the disaster is also affecting Canada’s significant community of Moroccan Jews—especially those based in Montreal. As of Sunday night, more than 2,100 people were killed in the 6.8-magnitude quake, while at least 2,400 have been seriously injured. The quake hit hardest in the remote villages of the Atlas Mountains, southeast of Marrakesh, although it was also felt as far as Casablanca to the north.

Before Canadian Jewish relief efforts kick into high gear Monday, The CJN Daily caught up with a young engineer from Toronto who was staying in Marrakesh when the quake hit.

Seth Davis, 25, and his girlfriend, count themselves lucky to be unscathed. They were set to make their way home to Canada on Monday. Davis joins host Ellin Bessner on The CJN Daily to describe what he saw. After that, you’ll hear from Montrealers Avraham Elarar, president of the Canadian Sephardi Federation, and Yair Szlak, CEO of Montreal’s Federation CJA, for local reactions.

What we talked about


The CJN Daily is written and hosted by Ellin Bessner (@ebessner on Twitter). Zachary Kauffman is the producer. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Dov Beck-Levine. Our title sponsor is Metropia. We’re a member of The CJN Podcast Network. To subscribe to this podcast, please watch this video. Donate to The CJN and receive a charitable tax receipt by clicking here.