I am very happy to meet once again with our Algerian friends. Over the past year, Algeria has entered a crucial phase in its history. Throughout this long period, we have constantly repeated the same thing: We have always said that it was up to the Algerians and them alone to decide their future and, together, to embark on the path of democratic dialogue. This was out of respect for Algeria’s sovereignty.
Presidential elections have taken place. There is now a new government with which France wants to work. Our Presidents and Prime Ministers have spoken in recent weeks. President Tebboune has expressed an ambition for Algeria: in-depth reforms to strengthen governance, the rule of law and freedoms, and also to revive and diversify the economy in keeping with the aspirations expressed by the Algerian people over the past year. He has pledged to lead Algeria in a spirit of dialogue, so that all Algerians may express their views on these reforms.
We hope he will succeed in this mission, and that the implementation of these reforms will lead to Algeria’s success and the success of the Algerian people.
I assured Sabri Boukadoum, whom I already knew, of France’s friendship and of our hope to initiate a new phase in our bilateral relations. We share the desire to step up trade to its highest level in 2020 in order to establish the new momentum you just spoke of on the timetable we approved together.
That means that we are going to resume, deepen and give a new impetus to discussions in every area in which we cooperate, whether they be security, the economy, culture, justice, education, mobility, or vocational training.
I must also say that with respect to international events, and specifically regional international events, we will have the opportunity to discuss several issues. We were both in Berlin the day before yesterday, in connection with the Libyan conflict, and beyond the implementation of a lasting ceasefire, we are going to coordinate our efforts to re-establish a political dialogue and will act together to ensure that the efforts we began in Berlin will be able to continue.
We will also review the situation in the Sahel and reaffirm our shared goals of security and the fight against terrorism. France and Algeria see eye to eye on these major challenges and many other issues, and our cooperation is vital.
Algeria is a power whose voice matters on the international stage. It recently reminded us of this by launching several diplomatic initiatives. It is a power that promotes balance and peace; it is strongly committed to the respect of state sovereignty and political dialogue. Algeria is listened to and respected, and on this basis, our countries can have an extremely strong relationship, which will be renewed shortly in the discussions I will be having with the Prime Minister and the President this afternoon. Thank you./.