France’s Macron Refuses ‘Repentance or Apologies’ to Algeria for Colonization, War Brutalities

On Algerian Independence Day in July 2020, Paris returned to Algeria the skulls of 24 resistance fighters decapitated by French soldiers after their revolt against colonial rule was crushed in 1849.

The People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria will not receive a formal apology from france for 132 years of colonial rule that included racial apartheid, a brutal war to block its independence, and nuclear weapons tests.

The office of French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday there would be “no repentance nor apologies” for French rule over Algeria. Instead, Macron will take part in several “symbolic acts” aiming to smooth over lasting enmity from the colonial period, which ended in a brutal war of independence that forced france from the country in 1962.

Symbolic Reconciliation

Those acts will include creating a “Memories and Truth” commission to “take a lucid look at the wounds of the past” and find a path to reconciliation, according to a Wednesday statement by Macron’s office.

On September 25, 2021, Macron will mark the National Day of the Harki, a holiday created in 2001 by then-President Jacques Chirac that commemorates the Muslim Algerians who served as auxiliaries to the French Army during its colonial rule over Algeria. After independence, Harkis were widely regarded by Algerian nationalists as traitors and many were killed in violent reprisals.

On October 17, 2021, they will mark the anniversary of the 1961 Algerian massacre in Paris by French…

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