Algeria demands ‘total respect’ from ex-colonial ruler France
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has demanded “total respect” from France, amid escalating tensions between the North African nation and its former colonial ruler.
Speaking publicly for the first time about the row, Tebboune told local media on Sunday that the return of the Algerian ambassador to France was “conditional on total respect for the Algerian state.”
“We forget that it [Algeria] was once a French colony… History should not be falsified,” he added.
Last week, Algeria accused France of “genocide” and announced the recall of its ambassador from Paris in anger over what it said were “inadmissible” comments attributed to French President Emmanuel Macron.
The move was followed by hostile remarks by French President Emanuel Macron about Algeria.
French media reported that Macron made recent comments about Algeria's post-colonial system of government and its attitudes to France.
The statement said the recall was motivated by recent comments about Algeria that were attributed to Macron. The comments amounted to “inadmissible interference” in Algeria's affairs and were "an intolerable affront” to Algerians who died fighting French colonialism, the Algerian presidency said.
The sharp escalation in tensions also follows a French decision to slash the number of visas issued to people in North Africa — including Algeria — because governments there are refusing to take back migrants expelled from France.
France killed millions of Algerians and committed war crimes during its colonial rule of the North African nation from 1830 to 1962.
In May 1830, France invaded Algeria under the pretext of receiving seven million francs. Algerian fighters strongly resisted the attack, but due to the superiority of the French equipment, the war was prolonged and French soldiers committed murder, rape, torture and other crimes against Algerians.
According to some estimates, the struggle for independence from France left over five and a half million Algerians dead, which amounted to about half of the country’s population at that time.
After the victory of the revolution and the independence of Algeria, the crimes of France continued and led to the destruction of Algerian settlements and the killing of thousands of people.
Even after nearly 60 years, Paris has failed to act against perpetrators of genocide, torture, murder or even to compensate the country for such actions committed by its forces.