Algeria-France relations: My visit to Algiers allows "clearing up some misunderstandings"

APS - 19 May 2016

ALGIERS- The president France-Algeria, Jean-Pierre Chevenement said, Thursday in Algiers, that his discussions with Algerian officials allowed "clearing up some misunderstandings that might have resulted from mistakes."

"I am glad that my visit in Algiers was an opportunity yesterday to hold long discussions with the Prime Minister (Abdemalek Sellal). We have cleared up some misunderstandings that might have resulted from mistakes in the execution," said Chevenement at the end of an audience granted to him by Minister of State, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Ramtane Lamamra.

"You know very well the system we are living in, you are journalists and you know very well that a comment will draw another. Politicians are often fond of small sentences, and you (journalists) spice things up," added the head of France-Algeria Association, who is on a two-day visit to Algeria.

As regards "positive evolutions" in many areas, he gave the example of the increase in the number of visas granted by France to Algerians, "400,000 visas were granted in 2015, against 200,000 in 2012," he said.

The evolution in bilateral relations is reflected in "the French investments in Algeria or Algerian investments in France," he added.

Chevenement said "Algeria has to adapt to a new situation."

"President Bouteflika has clearly said: the diversification of the Algerian economy is necessary," he explained, adding "everyone can contribute to it."

"The French-Algerian relations can be good or bad but they are never insignificant," he said referring to President Bouteflika's remarks, hoping that these relations would "continuously improve."

For Chevenement, "this friendship (between the two countries) is essential more than ever, because France needs Algeria and Algeria needs France. Together we can do much better than separately."

The former French Foreign minister said that he discussed with Lamamra "many issues relating to Africa, Europe and the Middle East."

As regards the situation in Libya, he underlined the importance of "Algeria's approach," hoping that "together we would contribute to the restoration of peace in Libya."