Despite his promise to not “beg forgiveness” from Algeria for French colonization, President Emmanuel Macron says he hopes to keep pursuing reconciliation with Abdelmajid Tebboune.
In an interview with Le Point magazine that was published late on Wednesday, he stated, “It’s not up to me to ask forgiveness, it’s not what this is about, that word would shatter all of our links.
The worst course of action, according to Macron, would be to declare that “we apologize and each go our own way.”
“Work on memory and history is not the end of the matter,” he continued.
In order to continue their “unique work of friendship,” he expressed the hope that Tebboune “would be able to travel to France in 2023,” following Macron’s own journey to Algiers the previous year.
However, several users of social media criticized the French president’s choice.
Rim-Salah Alouane, a French PhD candidate, wrote on Twitter: “One step forward, ten steps back. I don’t like to admit that I forewarned you, but I did.
Deep scars from the brutal 1954–62 war for independence and France’s 100–year colonization of Algeria have been poked and massaged by Macron throughout his political career.
Macron, who was running for president at the time, called the French occupation a “crime against humanity” in 2017.
While disallowing “repentance” and “apologies,” a report he commissioned from historian Benjamin Stora suggested more steps toward reconciliation between the two nations in 2020.
In the most recent admission by Paris of the crimes committed during the colonial era, Macron acknowledged in 2021 for the first time that French forces killed a prominent person in Algerian independence and then covered up his death.
However, the French president has also questioned whether Algeria was a country before being colonized, which has sparked a backlash in Algiers.
In the Le Point interview, Macron said, “These times of stress teach us.” Daoud is an Algerian author.
He continued, “You must be able to extend your hand once more and engage, as President Tebboune and I have done.
He supported the idea that Tebboune pay a visit to the graves of the anti-colonialist hero Abdelkader and his companions at Amboise, central France.
“Given the history of the Algerian people, that would make sense. It would be a chance for the French people to comprehend realities that are frequently concealed, added Macron.
Through immigration, participation in the independence war, and the post-war repatriation of French settlers, Algeria and France have maintained longstanding relationships that currently affect more than 10 million people residing in France.
SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES