BY DAILY SABAH WITH AGENCIES
ISTANBUL AUG 28, 2022 –
French President Emmanuel Macron delivers a speech during a meeting with members of the French community at the French ambassador to Algeria’s residence, in Algiers, Aug. 26, 2022, during an official visit. (AFP)
Türkiye on Saturday lashed out at what it described as French President Emmanuel Macron’s “unacceptable” comments in Algeria on foreign powers spreading anti-French propaganda in Africa.
“It is extremely unfortunate that French President Emmanuel Macron made statements targeting our country, along with some other countries, during his visit to Algeria,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Tanju Bilgiç said in a written response to questions by reporters.
“It is unacceptable that French President Macron, who has trouble confronting his colonial past in Africa, especially in Algeria, tries to get rid of his colonial past by accusing other countries, including ours,” he added.
Bilgiç said Ankara hopes France will reach the “level of maturity” to face its colonial past “without blaming other countries.”
He said that if France wants to understand why Paris faces a backlash from the African continent, “it should look for the source of this in its colonial past and its efforts to continue (colonialism) with different methods and try to correct this.”
“Claiming that this backlash is caused by the activities of third countries, instead of confronting and solving the problems related to their own past, is not only denial of a sociological phenomenon and history, but also a reflection of the distorted mentality of some politicians,” he said.
Stressing that Türkiye is developing its relations with both Algeria and other countries on the African continent, he said that these relations are based on a “mutual trust and win-win relationship.”
On a visit to France’s former colony aimed at mending troubled ties, Macron on Friday appeared to warn young Algerians and Africans against manipulation by “networks” influenced by Türkiye, Russia and China that present France as an “enemy.”
“There is immense manipulation,” Macron told reporters.
“Many political Islam activists have an enemy: France. Many of the networks that are covertly pushed – … by Turkey… by Russia… by China – have an enemy: France.”
Macron’s three-day visit to Algeria this week has aimed to turn the page on months of tensions with the North African country, which earlier this year marked six decades of independence following 132 years of French rule.
It also comes as European powers scramble to replace Russian energy imports after the invasion of Ukraine – including with supplies from Algeria, Africa’s top gas exporter.