Algeria, officially the Democratic and Popular
Republic of Algeria, is one of the fifty-four countries that make up
the African continent. Its capital and most populated city is
Algiers. It is located to the north of the continent, bounded on the
north by the Mediterranean Sea, on the east by Tunisia and Libya, on
the south by Niger and Mali, on the southwest by Mauritania and on
the west by the non-autonomous territory of Western Sahara and
Morocco. With 2 381 740 km² it is the largest country in the
continent and with 33 333 216 inhabitants. in 2008, the ninth most
populous, behind Nigeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic
of the Congo, South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya and Morocco.
Together with Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritania and Libya, it is one of
the countries that comprise the Maghreb. Constitutionally, it is
defined as an Arab, Amazigh and Muslim country. It is a member of
the African Union and the Arab League since practically its
independence, and contributed to the creation of the Arab Maghreb
Union (UMA) in 1988.
Travel Destinations in Algeria
Ahaggar National Park
Ahaggar National Park is famous for its unusual
mountains that create beautiful landscape.
Algiers is the largest city in Algeria that also
serves as its capital. It is occasionally referred as Alger la
Blanche or Algiers the White after the color of its buildings.
Chrea National Park
Chrea National Park is protected area of a
temperate forest that you would not expect to see in this corner
of the World.
Djémila or Cuicul as it was known back then,
was constructed by the Romans during reign of emperor Nerva.
Djurdjura National Park
Djurdjura National Park is an expansive nature
preserve that covers mountains in Kabylia region.
El Kala National Park
El Kala National Park protects sclerophyllous
forests and wetlands on the beaches in El Tarf Province of
Gouraya National Park
National Park situated in Béjaïa Province in the Northern
Algeria. This natural reserve covers an area of 20.8 km² on the
Lambaesis is a city that grew around Roman
military camp of third legion (Legio III Augusta) between 123
and 129 AD.
Tassili n'Ajjer is a dry plateau that is famous
for ancient rock art left by prehistoric man from the time when
these lands were covered by grasslands.
Tiddis is an ancient Roman settlement situated
near Bni Hamden village in the Constantine Province of Algeria.
Timgad was constructed in 100 AD Ex nihilo ("out of nothing" Latin) by the
Emperor Trajan. It served as a defense against Berber tribes in the Aures
Situated on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea
Tipasa was originally found by the Phoenicians as a trade post
in the North Africa. Roman Emperor Claudius turned it into a
colony in the first century AD.
Algeria in antiquity
Stone tools belonging to
the Lower and Middle Paleolithic (400-300 thousand years ago) were
found. In ancient times, ancient Libyan tribes lived on the
territory of modern Algeria. In the XII century BC e. the first
Phoenician colonies arose.
In the III century BC. e. tribal
unions of the masses and mazesils arose. The leader of the masses
Massinissa united both unions into a single state of Numidia. The
king of Numidia of Yugurt (116-105 BC) was defeated in the Yugurt
war with Rome and in 46 BC. e. Numidia turned into a Roman province.
In 438 AD e. the coastal part of North Africa (including the
territory of modern Algeria) was conquered by vandals. In the year
439 e. a kingdom of vandals and Alans is created. In the year 534 e.
part of the territory of modern Algeria was conquered by Byzantium.
VII – XIX centuries
In the 7th century, the territory of
modern Algeria was conquered by the Arabs and annexed to the Arab
Caliphate. The Byzantines were expelled. Islam is spreading rapidly
among the country's population.
In 761–909, the Kharijite
imamat Tahert, in which the Rustamids ruled, existed in Algeria.
After his fall under the blows of the Fatimids, the fugitives
created the medieval state of Mzab in the Sahara. The successors of
the Fatimids were Zirids. In 1014-1152 Hammadids ruled over a large
part of Algeria.
In the XI century, two Arab tribes invaded
Algeria - Banu Hilal and Banu Sulaym, which accelerated the process
of Arabization. The western part of Algeria was captured by the
Almoravids, who were replaced by the Almohad. Tlemcen was the
capital of the state of the Zayanids (Abdalvadids).
beginning of the XVI century, the Spaniards seized the coastal
cities of Algeria: Mers el-Kebir (1505), Oran (1509), Bejaya (1510),
Algeria (1510) and others. Algerian feudal lords turned to the
corsairs to the Barbaross brothers for help. Hayreddin Barbarossa
ruled in Algeria in 1519–46. and recognized himself as a vassal of
the Turkish sultan, from whom he received the title of balerbey. In
the 2nd half of the 16th century, Algeria became a pashalyk
(province) of the Ottoman Empire, divided into 3 beyliks:
Konstantin, Titteri (Medea) and Mascara (Oran). Piracy flourishes on
the Barbarian coast. In 1711, dei Baba Ali expelled the last Turkish
pasha and stopped paying tribute to the Sultan. European states
recognized the actual independence of Algeria. At the end of the
18th century, the state of the maidens fell into decay, the income
from corsairism sharply decreased.
At the beginning of the
19th century, French colonization began.
1830 - the beginning
of the French colonial invasion. Armed struggle (for example, the
rebellion of Abd al-Qadir) lasts almost until the end of the 19th
1848 - Algeria was declared the territory of France
(French Algeria), divided into departments led by prefects and
headed by the French Governor General.
1940 - during World War II, after France surrendered to Hitler
Germany, Algeria became a source of raw materials and food for
Germany and Italy.
November 1942 - Anglo-American troops landed
in Algeria. In the offensive on Tunisia on the side of the Allies,
French troops also take part, to a large extent manned by Algerians,
Moroccans and residents of other French colonies in Africa.
- The National Liberation Front (TNF) was formed in Algeria.
1957, France began work on the construction of a nuclear testing
ground in Algeria. On November 3, 1959, General Charles de Gaulle
delivered a speech at the Center for Higher Military Studies. He
stated that the main goal of France’s nuclear program is to create a
national strike force based on nuclear weapons that could be used
anywhere in the world.
The developer of French nuclear
weapons was Bertrand Goldschmidt, who worked with Maria Curie and
participated in the Manhattan project.
On February 13, 1960,
France conducted its first atmospheric nuclear test at a test site
near the city of Reggan in the province of Adrar, in southwestern
Algeria (about 70 kilotons of TNT - for comparison, a nuclear charge
of 13 to 18 kilotons was blown up in Hiroshima, about Nagotaki 21
kilotons). In total, according to official figures, France carried
out 17 atomic explosions in Algeria. In-Ecker - French training
ground for 13 atomic tests between 1961 and 1966. According to
Algerian data, in some areas near Reggan, the level of radiation
even now far exceeds permissible standards.
Later, after the liberation of Algeria, France had
to look for another landfill. For this purpose, atolls of Mururoa
and Fangataufa in French Polynesia were chosen in 1963.
Mansouri, a specialist in the Algerian Atomic Research Center,
believes that after independence was declared by Algeria on March
18, 1962, France continued secret tests in exchange for the Evian
Accords, under which General de Gaulle recognized the independence
of Algeria, and up to 40 nuclear explosions were carried out until
1966, in addition to the main tests, but the classified stamp has
not yet been removed from this information.
1959, the French government recognized the Algerians' right to
self-determination, but this move was met with hostility by the
French colonists and the “right”, large-scale anti-government
rebellions were organized twice in order to stop the transfer of
political power to the local population. The TNF begins a war of
independence, leading to large casualties, the number of which
varies, according to various estimates, from 300 thousand to 1
million. A large proportion of this number are civilians. The
negotiation process ended with the signing on March 18, 1962 of
ceasefire and self-determination agreements in Algeria through a
referendum (Evian Accords). During the referendum in Algeria, the
turnout was 91%, 99.7% of those who voted for Algeria’s
self-determination, and in France, opinions were divided equally,
making 64% in favor. In accordance with previous agreements, France
withdrew its troops in 1964, by July 1, 1967, evacuated military
bases in the Sahara, and in February 1968, evacuated a naval base in
Mers-al-Kebir. The economic assets of large French companies in
Algeria, under the letter of the Evian Agreements, remained in their
hands, although the property of the colonists was nationalized.
Algeria withdrew from NATO.
Attempts to create an underground
UAS military fascist organization (fr. Organization armee secrete),
created in 1961, to disrupt the implementation of agreements by
means of mass terror in cities were unsuccessful. During the
referendum of July 1, 1962, the vast majority of Algerians supported
independence, which was immediately recognized by the French
government. Over a million Europeans and their local supporters
hastily left the country. As a result of a bloody war against the
French colonial forces in 1962, Algeria became an independent
In December 1965, the first French satellite
was launched at the Hammagir cosmodrome, and in 1967 the cosmodrome
The first government of independent Algeria is led by
leader (TNF) Ahmed Ben Bella. In 1965, a military coup took place,
Huari Boumedien, Minister of Defense and former colleague of Ben
Bella, came to power, proclaiming a course to build a socialist in
essence, but pragmatic in the spirit of the economic and political
system, taking into account the Algerian specifics and without focus
on any patterns . A one-party system is being established in the
country. During this period, ties between the USSR and Algeria
became stronger and expanded, originating during the war for the
independence of Algeria, which was now considered one of the allies
of the USSR, following the "non-capitalist path of development." The
next 25 years become a period of comparative stability for Algeria.
After Boumedien’s death, a short struggle broke out between the
pro-Western and left-wing factions in the ruling party, and as a
result, the country (and the party in 1979) was led by a compromise
candidate, Chadli Benjedid. During his reign, all the economic
shortcomings of the previous president affected, and by the end of
the 1980s, the country was on the verge of an economic collapse. In
1986 and 1988 there were riots caused by a deterioration in the
quality of life, to curb which they had to attract an army.
In the 1980s, an ideological turn in the religious field took place,
the Algerian leadership, in search of sources of economic
assistance, headed for cooperation with conservative Muslim
countries, investing heavily in the development of Islamic
infrastructure. At the same time, the local clergy is ideologically
and financially reoriented to the religious centers of the Persian
Gulf countries. As a result, there is a sharp increase in
fundamentalist sentiments among the clergy and religious activists.
Fundamentalists demand the reorganization of society according to
Sharia law, and consistently oppose the secular authorities,
accusing them of moving away from Islam. In the context of the
growing economic and political crisis, the Islamists made claims to
power in order to build a theocratic state based entirely on Sharia
and the Koran’s covenants.
By the end of the 1980s, the contradictions
between the supporters of secular power and the Islamists escalated
into a civil war, which ended in the defeat of fundamentalists.
In December 1991, after it became clear that as a result of the
first round of the first multiparty elections in the country, the
Islamic Salvation Front began to win, the Algerian military canceled
the second round, forced President Shadley Benjedid to resign,
established a military regime and banned the Islamic salvation
front. The Islamists reacted to this by going underground and
terror. The tactics of extremists were based both on attacks on the
military-police forces and representatives of the elite, and on
intimidation of the population. The apotheosis of her was the
assassination of the president of the country, Muhammad Budiaf in
June 1992. A large-scale civil war lasted almost a decade, and
individual incidents have been observed to this day. Over the past
years, the war claimed the lives of over 100 thousand people, mostly
victims of significant massacres and terrorist acts of Islamic
groups. The state suffered huge economic damage.
tough line of the military leadership of Algeria in 1992-1999
allowed to bring down a wave of terror and forced extremists to
negotiate national reconciliation. The local population in the form
of self-defense units was widely involved in the fight against
extremists. This hindered the actions of extremists in many
territories, ensured their political isolation from society and
freed up considerable forces of the army and special forces for
active operations. Great importance was attached to the
establishment of control over the Islamic infrastructure, the
consistent removal of radical imams from mosques, as well as the
suppression of external financing channels of both the armed wing of
extremists and their political structures.
On April 27, 1999,
the country's long-standing foreign minister, well-known politician
Abdel Aziz Bouteflik, was elected president of the country.
Since the spring of 2001, the political situation in
the country has been complicated by the crisis in Kabilia, a region
with a predominantly Berber population east of the country's
capital. The mass actions of the Berbers were suppressed by the
gendarmerie (internal troops), who used weapons, according to
official figures 60 people were killed and two thousand people were
injured. Severe repression of the authorities caused massive civil
disobedience and led to the creation of an informal self-government
of the Berber regions - the Coordinating Council of the village
committees of Kabilia, one of the requirements of which was to give
the Berber language tamazig the status of a second (after Arabic)
April 2004 After the second victory of
Abdelaziz Bouteflika in the presidential election, a partial amnesty
was announced under which the rebels were guaranteed forgiveness if
they voluntarily surrender and disarm.
September 2005 At a
popular referendum, the government approved the Charter for Peace
and Concord project, which provides for an amnesty of former members
of gangs that stop the armed struggle with the authorities and want
to return to peaceful life. However, the country's largest Islamist
group, the Salafist Group of Sermon and Jihad (about 1,000
militants), which joined Al-Qaeda in 2004, officially announced its
refusal to participate in this project.
October 2006 The leader
of the Salafist Group of Sermon and Jihad, Abu Musab Abdel Woodood,
announced the start of a "long-term war against the interests of the
United States and the West in the Arab Maghreb region."
2009 For the third time, Abdel Aziz Bouteflika was elected President
of the country.