Former French Interior Minister Jean-Pierre Chevènement, current President of the Foundation for Islam in France, and Head of the France-Algeria Association said that the Algerian community in France is well integrated in France despite some difficulties it is facing. He pointed out that there are 2 million dual nationality Algerians in France, and stressed that Paris should give Algeria special position in its foreign dealings.
Jean-Pierre Chevènement also explained in an interview with Echorouk and a number of national media outlets in Paris that: “The Algerian community is the closest to the French people out of all communities, especially since it is well integrated despite some difficulties.”
Chevènement considered that the Algerian community in France succeeded in proving itself and it is currently constituting a middle class where Algerians are educated, successful in their studies, and performing responsibilities and own companies and institutions.
Chevènement pointed out that Islam has not been a big problem for the Algerians in France, especially since Algeria adopts the Sunni Islam. However, the Salafist movement has affected Islam in France and even in other countries.
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Chevènement believes that the failure of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) in performing its tasks is firstly due to the very low budget that does not exceed 30 thousand Euros per year.
The second reason is what the interviewee called the conflict between Algeria and Morocco on this regard. Moroccans are considered to be more connected to Islam, for they apply traditional Islam and are influenced by the royal palace and the ruling party.
Chevènement believes that the Algerian-Moroccan relationship is like the relationship between two brothers, but these two brothers are always in conflict.
Chevènement described the French-Algerian relationship as unique, and France should give Algeria a special position in its foreign dealings and relations.
The interviewee concluded by saying that “Algeria is an ungovernable country. However, it has very great qualifications, and the country is not sufficiently diversified yet. Therefore, Algeria and France have lost many opportunities in the past.”