As Algeria marks half a century of independence, politicians have pushed for a French apology for its repression during its year rule and the bloody revolution that wrenched the country out of French control. The number killed is disputed; Algerian estimates exceed 1 million. Upon his election in May, the leftist Hollande promised to confront French colonial history, but an apology is fiercely opposed by French citizens who once fought Algerian insurgents. Last month, a former French defense minister made a vulgar gesture in reaction to a call to recognize colonial abuses, an outburst that was caught on camera and infuriated the Algerian media.
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As Algeria marks half a century of independence, politicians have pushed for a French apology for its repression during its year rule and the bloody revolution that wrenched the country out of French control.
The number killed is disputed; Algerian estimates exceed 1 million. Upon his election in May, the leftist Hollande promised to confront French colonial history, but an apology is fiercely opposed by French citizens who once fought Algerian insurgents.
Last month, a former French defense minister made a vulgar gesture in reaction to a call to recognize colonial abuses, an outburst that was caught on camera and infuriated the Algerian media. In his Thursday speech, Hollande spoke of three massacre sites and called for colonial archives to be thrown open to historians, according to French news reports.
Failing to apologize, however, is unlikely to help Hollande sway his most skeptical critics. This week, one former minister told an Algerian newspaper that the historical wounds were too deep to heal even if Hollande did apologize, saying the French president was not welcome. The French president also pledged to smooth the visa process for Algerians; Algerian authorities inked a deal with the French car company Renault to build a factory southwest of Oran and launch a joint venture owned partly by Algerian companies, according to a Renault statement.
The move to heal relations also comes as France frets about Islamists seizing control of northern Mali, where a weakened and fractured government has been unable to oust militants. Algeria has been uneasy about plans for outside intervention in Mali, which France has championed on the world stage.
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French president says Algeria suffered under ‘brutal’ colonialism
The Algerian press voices anger and concern after the double car bombing in Algeria which left dozens dead, including at least 11 UN staff. Some papers condemn the bombers, with one describing them as "the zombies of death", while others call for a change in security policy. But commentators also consider social issues, with one lamenting the state of the young generation and another calling on the whole of society to fight back. Arabic-language TV stations consider why the violent acts took place and what they represent for al-Qaeda. There's no point trying to understand what goes on in the sick brain of the zombies of death. What has to be noted politically is that security provision, while necessary from every point of view, is not enough.
It is the second-largest daily Arabophone newspaper after El Khabar. The newspaper used to publish a series of weekly articles in English from July 24 to August 20, Participants had to read the articles then answer the two asked questions on the newspaper's website, the British Council's website, or the Facebook page. The prizes were granted to five winners and were awarded in September in a ceremony held at the UK Ambassador's Residence in Algiers in presence of prominent personalities. In a fall trial, the leader of neighbouring Libya , Muammar Gaddafi , took the unprecedented step of suing the paper in an Algerian court for defamation. The court decided on October 31 that Ech Chorouk's reporting of Qadhafi's attempts to induce Algerian Tuaregs to separatism had slandered the Libyan leader, and suspended the paper for two months. The editor and the responsible reporter were both sentenced to six months in jail.
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