French President, Emmanuel Macron, has announced that he will launch an official visit to Algeria on December 6.
Macron’s announcement of the date of his visit to Algeria came in response to a citizen who brought the matter before a group of residents who received him in the municipality of Tourcoing, northern France.
Macron did not announce the nature of his upcoming visit to Algeria if it will be a state visit or a regular official visit.
In May 2017, President Abdelaziz Bouteflika congratulated Emmanuel Macron for becoming President of France and said he deserved it, adding that the French people had chosen “a friend of the Algerian people”.
Macron sparked controversy in France when he said during a visit to Algeria, and during his electoral campaign, that French colonialism was a “crime against humanity”.
In last June, the French President held a phone conversation with his counterpart, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, addressing a number of issues of interest to Algeria and Paris, particularly the Libyan crisis and the situation in the Sahel and Western Sahara.
Both Presidents confirmed “their joint determination to combine efforts to eradicate terrorism in the Sahel region”, according to a statement that was issued by the Presidency.
“The talks were an opportunity for the presidents of the two countries to reaffirm their desire to strengthen the friendly relationships and cooperation between Algeria and France”, the statement said, while the French presidency said that Macron expressed his desire to build friendly and confident relationships with Algeria, which he described as France’s strategic partner.
Emanuel Macron expressed his readiness to open a new page between the two countries based on mutual cooperation and the development of consultations between them on various issues and common concerns.
“I am ready to visit Algeria as soon as your circumstances allow”, Macron told President Bouteflika in a message marking the Independence Day on last July 5.
On Sunday, French Foreign Minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, was accompanied by a high-level delegation in Algeria, to oversee the work of the joint high commission works between the two countries, the strategic dialogue between the two countries and prepare for the visit of French President, Emmanuel Macron, but without disclosing its date.
The relationships between the two countries, despite the rapprochement between them, noticed since the beginning of the millennium, a kind of fluctuation that is caused by fundamental differences.
These differences are reflected in the reluctance of the Elysee authorities to resolve the file of history and memory by presenting a formal confession and apology, as it did with some of the old colonies in the continent, and attempts by Paris in recent months to neutralize the Algerian role in the regional files, especially in Mali and the Sahel region.
Moderate circles in the Al-Mouradi and Elysee Palaces are counting on Emmanuel Macron to overcome the obstacles that have afflicted the two sides, especially after the softness he showed during his visit to Algeria before his election as President of France, towards the file of history and collective memory.