“I assume this outstretched hand.” On the occasion of a ceremony organized at the Elysée to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Evian agreements, Emmanuel Macron declared on Saturday March 19 “to assume” the memorial gestures, sometimes controversial, made since the beginning of the five-year period on the Algerian war. “I think the day will come when Algeria will take this path”added the head of state.
REPLAY >> Watch Emmanuel Macron’s full speech for the anniversary of the Evian agreements
He recalled all the initiatives taken since 2017 to “appease” the memory of this war which, with “his unspoken”at “was the matrix of many resentments” in France as in Algeria. “Many will tell me: you are doing all this, but you are not serious because Algeria is not moving. Each time, all my predecessors have been confronted with the same thing”he said in front of some 200 guests.
No Algerian official was present at the Elysee, although the ambassador to France, Mohamed-Antar Daoud, had been invited, according to the Elysee.
After two years of tension, relations between the two countries are now marked by a certain appeasement. In Algiers, President Abdelmadjid Tebboune said on Friday that the memorial file should “inevitably to be treated in a responsible and fair manner in an atmosphere of openness and trust”. But the “hideous crimes of colonization will not be forgotten and cannot be time-barred”he warned in a message broadcast by the presidency on the occasion of this anniversary, celebrated in Algeria on March 19 as a “Victory Day”.
Emmanuel Macron, candidate for a new presidential term on April 10 and 24, affirmed his certainty that memorial gestures would be continued in the coming years. The next one is scheduled for October 18 for a tribute to the conscripts who fought during the war. “There will still be times when we stumble, there will inevitably be moments of nervousness, there will still be feelings of injustice. But we will get there”he concluded.