The visiting French president could be seen waving to onlookers in the Algerian city of Oran even as the sloganeering group continued their protest.

Macron’s trip follows months of tension between Paris and the North African country, which earlier this year marked six decades of independence after 132 years of French rule. (AFP)

A crowd shouted slogans hailing Algeria during a visit by Frenchman Emmanuel Macron to a town in the former French colony.

Video of the incident shows a group of people shouting “long live Algeria” as the French president – surrounded by security personnel – stood on a crowded street in the northwestern city of Oran.

Macron could be seen waving to onlookers even as the slogan-shouting group continued their protest. Macron then got into his car parked on the side of the road.

He was on a three-day trip to the North African country which ended on Saturday.

The visit came less than two months after Algeria marked six decades of independence after 132 years of French rule and a devastating eight-year war.

Relations between Paris and Algiers have experienced repeated crises over the years.

They were particularly frosty since last year when Macron questioned Algeria’s existence as a nation before French occupation and accused the government of fomenting “hate towards France”.

Algeria withdrew its ambassador in response and banned French military aircraft from its airspace.

Diplomatic relations have since resumed, as well as overflights to French army bases in sub-Saharan Africa.

Macron’s comments in Algeria “unacceptable”

“History is not written with lies”

On Saturday, France and Algeria signed a declaration of “renewed partnership” following Macron’s visit.

Macron and Algerian President Abdelmajid Tebboune signed the declaration in the capital Algiers for a “new dynamic of irreversible progress” in relations between the two countries, the official APS news agency reported.

The two leaders also signed five other agreements covering different areas.

But the visit of the French president was not unanimously welcomed by the Algerians.

“History cannot be written with lies…like that Algeria was created by France,” read an editorial in the French-language newspaper Le Soir.

“We expected Macron to erase this gross lie during this visit,” he said, blaming him for a “lack of courage (…) to recognize his own faults and those of his country”.

Macron calls for ‘truth and recognition’ of the past to mend ties with Algeria

Source: TRTWorld and agencies


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