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Belhimer: Algeria’s firm position on a comprehensive settlement of the Memory File is a position of principle

Minister of Communication and Government Spokesman Ammar Belhimer affirmed, today, Friday, that Algeria’s firm position about the request for a comprehensive settlement of the memory file, based on France’s final and total recognition of its crimes against the Algerian people, and the necessity to provide apologies and fair compensation for those crimes, is a ” position of principle.”

In his message on the occasion of the celebration – for the first time in the history of independent Algeria – of the “National Day of Memory” which coincides this year with the 76th anniversary of the massacres of May 8, 1945, the government spokesman stressed that Algeria remains committed to a comprehensive settlement of the memory file, stressing that Algeria’s struggle in this direction “has started to yield fruit.”

Belhimer recalled that this settlement is based on “France’s official, final and total recognition of its crimes that Pt. Macron himself described as crimes against humanity, and the necessity to provide apologies and fair compensation for those crimes.”

The compensation also includes “taking care of the remnants of nuclear explosions, including the disclosure of maps of waste sites resulting from those explosions, which Algerian and French experts and historians said are among the worst crimes France had committed in Algeria in accordance with the policy of genocide adopted by the French colonialism,” Belhimer adds.

He wrote in this context: “We are aware that the anti-Algerian lobbies inside and outside France will continue to pressure by all means in order to hinder the process of the memory file, but we will stick to our position of principle on this file around which the entire Algerian nation is gathered, including citizens, official bodies, historians, experts, civil society organizations and media, especially through the (Memory TV Channel), which was launched last year on the occasion of the 66th anniversary of the outbreak of the glorious liberation war. ”

The efforts being made in this regard, Belhimer went on to say,  reflect “the political will centered on preserving the nation’s sovereignty,” recalling the statement of the President of the Republic in which he affirmed that “our history will remain at the forefront of the preoccupations of the new Algeria and the preoccupations of its youth, and we will never yield it in our foreign relations.”

He pointed out, in this respect, the ” gains” achieved by Algeria, which he described as modest but “of significant moral value,” such as retrieving the skulls of the heroes of the National Resistance, disclosing the archives which date back to over fifty years and France’s recognition of torture and assassination of symbols of the liberation revolution.

Meanwhile, Belhimer stressed that the slogan “Memory refuses to forget”, which was chosen to mark the occasion, “summarizes Algeria’s firm position in demanding France to assume full responsibility for the crimes that left millions of victims throughout a century and 32 years of brutal colonialism.”

The choice of the province of Setif to host the official events also carries a profound symbolic connection between the place and the massacres of May 8, 1945, during which the French occupation army annihilated Algerians who went out in peaceful demonstrations to demand their legitimate right to freedom and independence, ”Belhimer adds in his message.

He said in the same context: “The National Day of Memory, with its great struggle momentum, dating back to the era of popular resistance, the national movement and the liberation revolution, is a bridge linking young people and youth with the honorable past of their country and with the sacrifices and heroic actions of their fathers and grandfathers, which have become an example and a beacon for the free people of the world.”

Hence, the President of the Republic, Mr. Abdelmadjid Tebboune’s consecration in 2020, of the National Day of Memory, in gratitude for the tremendous sacrifices made by the Algerian people in the massacres of May 8, 1945 and during the outbreak of the liberation revolution on November 1, 1954 is “a small part of the duty to fulfill the pledge of the righteous martyrs and the glorious Moudjahidin”. Belhimer adds.

With all these considerations, “Today’s generation that has demonstrated on various occasions a high level of awareness and patriotism must preserve the memory by rallying around a one and unified Algeria, moving steadily towards establishing a new era of development and justice, and not neglect its rights and material and moral interests, especially those associated with a glorious era of the nation’s struggle.

The government spokesman concluded his message by affirming that “the nation that preserves its history, preserves itself and increases its ability to raise popular awareness in facing up to the maneuvers of racist currents and lobbies on the other side of the Mediterranean, whose time stopped in an era buried forever by the will of the people.

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