In January 2021 the French historian Benjamin Stora delivered a report commissioned by President Emmanuel Macron that is aimed at “reconciling memories” between France and its former colony Algeria. The French head of state said he would follow a recommendation in the report and establish a “memories and truth” commission to address the history of France’s colonial past in Algeria, but he stopped short of issuing an official apology. The report itself has attracted criticism in both France and Algeria. Mediapart has asked two Algerian historians, Afaf Zekkour and Noureddine Amara, for their views of the document and of Franco-Algeiran relations in general. The pair criticise Stora for what they call “soft revisionism” and for prioritising France's needs for a united view over the recounting of history. Rachida El Azzouzi reports.
The commission was a central recommendation of a report presented to Mr Macron last week by historian Benjamin Stora that marks another attempt to try to come to terms with one of the most sensitive periods of French history.
France is returning to Algeria the remains of 24 combattants killed in the 19th century during the early French colonialisation of the North African country which finally won independence in 1962 after a bitter eight-year war.
Algeria singled out two documentaries broadcast on Tuesday by France 5 and the former colonial power's Parliamentary Channel, about the recent protests.
The North African country’s new president has put shale gas back on the agenda, an unpopular, short-sighted move that has added to the complaints of a restive population whose protests brought about dramatic regime change last year. Rachida El Azzouzi reports.
Mathilde Panot, a senior Member of Parliament for France's radical left opposition party La France Insoumise (LFI) ('France Unbowed'), travelled to Algeria to show her solidarity for the people taking part in the 'Hirak' or popular movement against the regime there. But after two days she and her delegation were arrested and taken to the capital Algiers where she was effectively placed under house arrest in an hotel. After an intervention by France's Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mathilde Panot was eventually put on a plane back to France. Mediapart's Rachida El Azzouzi, Pauline Graulle and Khedidja Zerouali report on events which highlight the continuing repression of opposition voices in Algeria.
In Paris, car horns could be heard beeping as crowds waving Algerian flags headed towards the Champs-Élysées to celebrate win over Senegal.
A total of 282 people were arrested across the country, 249 of whom were placed in police custody, the interior ministry said on Monday.
They are the latest protests against Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s decision to run for a fifth term in office.
Authorities in the French city of Bayonne are struggling to cope with the number of migrants coming from across the nearby Spanish border. Mediapart met Joseph and Moriba, 'blood brothers' who are seeking France's protection after nearly dying at sea crossing to Europe from Morocco. After a legal battle, Joseph has now been recognised as a minor by the French courts while Moriba's request will be heard on appeal shortly. Mathilde Mathieu reports.
Seven Trappist monks who were murdered in Algeria in 1996 were among 19 Catholic clergy killed in the country during an insurgency by hardline Islamists to be beatified on Saturday by the Vatican – the first step in the Church's process to award a person sainthood.
President Emmanuel Macron has announced the bestowing of national honours to members of the community known as the Harkis, the Algerians who fought alongside the French army in the North African country's bloody war of independence, in his continuing bid to soften the still bitter divisions of left over from the Algerian war.
In a highly symbolic ceremony, French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday met the 87-year-old widow of Maurice Audin, a communist mathematician who disappeared in 1957 after being arrested by the French military during the seven-year Algerian war of independence, when he apologised to Josette Audin on behalf of the French state and, in the first official admission of its kind, acknowledged the army's systematic use of torture during the conflict.
The French overseas territory of New Caledonia will hold a referendum on November 4th to decide whether the South Pacific archipelago should opt for self-rule. It comes after a 30-year political process to ease continuing high tensions between pro-independence militants from the indigenous Kanak population and the community of ethnic Europeans. The territory has a chequered and often violent history since it became a French possession in 1853, which Mediapart is charting this summer in a series of articles which examine the construction of what was a most singular colonial project. Here, Lucie Delaporte returns to the story of how the defeated militants of the 1871 Paris Commune were deported to New Caledonia alongside Algerian tribesmen who led one of the first major revolts against French rule in Algeria.