Abstract

In this paper, a tecto-sedimentary evolution model of the northwestern external Rif zones (Morocco) is proposed. It is based on the study of structural relationships and the biostratigraphic and sedimentologic analysis of different Tertiary syn-tectonic units. This zone shows alternating foredeep basins and anticlinal ramps with a NNW-SSE structural trend and a vergence toward the WSW. The trend of turbiditic bodies and palaeocurrent directions (from the SSE to the NNW) are parallel to the regional tectonic strike. Sidi Mrayt and El Habt basins are filled with syn-tectonic middle Eocene to middle Miocene sediments; The Habt basin is subdivided in two sub-basins: Asilah-Larache and Rirha-Gzoula. The deposits are distributed in two separated turbiditic complex, each one including a stacking of turbiditic systems. The Rirha-Gzoula and Asilah-Larache sub-basins are located in front of two anticline ridge structures made up of Upper Cretaceous and Lower Eocene material; they are respectively Boujediane and Arbaa Ayacha anticlines. The distribution of turbiditic bodies, unconformities and structural relationships within the thrusts and folds system in the northwestern external Rif indicate the progression toward the external zones of fault-propagation folds and associated basins.

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