Algerians want colonial 'crimes' recognised

2012-10-31 14:19

Algiers - Algerians want "frank acknowledgement" of crimes committed against them during the French colonisation of the country, a minister said on Tuesday, ahead of the 58th anniversary of the war for independence.

"In view of the crimes committed by this coloniser against a defenceless people... the Algerians want frank acknowledgement [of them]," Mohamed Cherif Abbas, minister of the mujahedeen (veterans of the war), told news agency APS.

Cherif spoke after French President Francois Hollande recognised earlier this month the "bloody repression" of Algerian protesters by police in Paris in October 1961, which historians killed dozens, possibly hundreds.

At the call of Algeria's National Liberation Front (FLN), which was fighting for independence, between 20 000 and 30 000 men, women and children from Algeria protested in Paris against a police curfew.

Ordered to halt the demonstration, police waded into the crowd in a hail of blows and bodies were thrown into the river.

The official toll was given as three dead, including two Algerians, but historians have said that between 50 and 200 people were killed.

"The recognition of the October 17 1961 massacre is primarily political, given the manner in which it was carried out," Cherif said, two days before the anniversary of the war, which started 1 November 1954.

Hollande is set to visit Algeria in December and hopes to improve relations between the two countries and achieve a "strategic partnership", French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has said.

The FLN won independence for the north African country in July 1962.

  • sisie.indola - 2012-10-31 15:38

    And while we are about it - let the USA also hold the Brits liable for crimes against humanity when the Brits were in charge. This is so ridiculous it's laughable - if it's Africa it's about the money. Not enough to get aid from the western countries but now they want everything. Go work for it!

      tsietsi.gagai - 2012-10-31 16:54

      Payment of money to the Jews wsnt abt money !!! Payment by Gaddafi for the bombing of the plane over Scotland wsnt abt money!! Oh knw Eurpeans nid not work for their money. The can alwys come to Afrika to \invest\ - steal few resources.

  • pjbadenhorst - 2012-10-31 15:55

    How can that be of any benefit other than further enforcing the victimhood of their population?

  • johan.vonsolms - 2012-10-31 17:47

    Every nation on this planet has been a victim of human invasive behavior. It is how that nation lifts itself in the wake that matters. Stop feeling sorry for yourselves and start thinking progressively for crying out loud!

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