Algeria and France to normalize relations

According to news agencies, Algeria and France have resolved their diplomatic crisis and agreed to strengthen their cooperation following a phone call between their presidents.

Algeria’s ambassador to France, who was recalled home in February, is set to return to his post in Paris in the coming days, signaling an end to the recent diplomatic row between the two nations. The French presidency stated that the leaders have agreed to reinforce contact between the two countries to avoid misunderstandings.

President Emmanuel Macron’s office announced on Friday that President Abdelmadjid Tebboune had informed Macron during a phone call that Ambassador Said Moussi would soon be back in Paris.

The ambassador was recalled after Algerian militant Amira Bouraoui, who also holds French nationality, was allegedly helped by French diplomats to leave Algeria for France from Tunisia on February 6, despite an official demand for her to be returned home. The Algerian authorities had called her departure an “illegal exfiltration.”

Bouraoui was known for her protest against former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s fourth term and her involvement in the Hirak protest movement.

She was detained and sentenced to one year in prison in 2020 before being granted provisional release.

According to Macron’s office, the two leaders agreed to reinforce communication channels between the services concerned to avoid such misunderstandings in the future, and they hoped that the return of the ambassador would help to improve the relationship between the two countries.

President Tebboune is expected to make a state visit to France, possibly in May, which makes the return of the ambassador and the resolution of the diplomatic spat all the more significant.