The Algerian National Construction Movement bashes the French Foreign Minister’s comments regarding the Algerian national anthem, saying they infringed on the country’s sovereignty.
The Algerian National Construction Movement (NCM) strongly objected to the statements made by French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna regarding decisions made by President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, which regulate the conditions and procedures for performing the national anthem in its entirety or in an abbreviated form.
The President of the NCM, Abdelkader Benkirane, stated that the movement considered the statements of the French official to be “provocative” and “unacceptable”, adding that they are blatant violations of universally-recognized diplomatic norms and a strong infringement on the principle of respect and non-interference upon which govern the bilateral affairs of sovereign nations.
He further underlined that “such statements from a French official, at this level of representation of the official foreign decision making, contradict the political will of the chief executive of the Elysee Palace to strengthen France’s relationship with Algeria and represent a regrettable and disappointing shift from the will to overcome current differences and build a new relationship.”
The movement also emphasized that “this condescending tone” and the attempts to undermine the sovereignty of Algeria’s national decision come at a time characterized by intentional tension driven by a misleading hostile campaign led by some French elites and political entities against Algeria.
Benkirane’s comments came in response to statements made by the French Foreign Minister in an interview with a French channel, in which she expressed her displeasure with the inclusion of a segment in the Algerian national anthem that was directed against France’s colonization of the country.
Colonna questioned the reasons that led Algeria to retain the segment while performing the national anthem “Qassaman” during official events and celebrations. She further said that the Algerian anthem “has surpassed its time, and I don’t want to comment on a foreign anthem, but this anthem (the Algerian anthem) was written in 1956 in the context and circumstances of colonization and war, and it contains powerful words that refer to France.”
In early October 2022, a diplomatic crisis erupted between France and Algeria following unexpected and unprecedented statements made by Macron, in which he questioned the existence of an “Algerian nation” before French colonization. He said that the official Algerian history had been completely rewritten and was not based on facts and also accused the Algerian president of being influenced by those around him.
Subsequently, Tebboune, in an interview with German magazine Der Spiegel said that his French counterpart “harmed the dignity of the Algerians”.
In 1962, Algeria pushed out the French colonizers and gained its independence after about 132 years of French occupation which ended after seven and a half years of a bloody war that left more than a million dead, making it the first French colony in Africa to liberate itself by force.