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France Returns Stays of 19th Century Algerian Anti-Colonial Fighters

France Returns Remains of 19th Century Algerian Anti-Colonial Fighters


(ALGIERS, Algeria) — Algeria eventually buried the stays of 24 fighters decapitated for resisting French colonial forces within the 19th century, in a ceremony Sunday wealthy with symbolism marking the nation’s 58th anniversary of independence.

The fighters’ skulls have been taken to Paris as conflict trophies and held in a museum for many years till their repatriation to Algeria on Friday, amid a rising international reckoning with the legacy of colonialism.

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune mentioned he’s hoping for an apology from France for colonial-era wrongs.

“We now have already obtained half-apologies. There should be one other step,” he mentioned in an interview broadcast Saturday with France-24 tv. He welcomed the return of the skulls and expressed hope that French President Emmanuel Macron might enhance relations and deal with historic disputes.

Tebboune presided over the interment of the stays Sunday in a army ceremony at El Alia cemetery east of Algiers, in a bit for fallen independence fighters. Firefighters lay the coffins, draped with inexperienced, white and purple Algerian flags, within the earth.

The 24 took half in an 1849 revolt after French colonial forces occupied Algeria in 1830. Algeria formally declared independence on July 5, 1962 after a brutal conflict.

Algeria’s veterans minister, Tayeb Zitouni, welcomed “the return of those heroes to the land of their ancestors, after a century and a half in autopsy exile.”

Algerians from totally different areas lined as much as pay respect to the fighters on Saturday, when their coffins have been on public show on the Algiers Palace of Tradition.

Mohamed Arezki Ferrad, historical past professor on the College of Algiers, mentioned a whole bunch of different Algerian skulls stay in France and referred to as for his or her return, in addition to reparations for French nuclear checks carried out within the Algerian Sahara within the early 1960s.