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Two Algerian ministries end use of French in official correspondences

October 22, 2021 at 8:42 pm

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune (R) meets with the visiting French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian in the capital Algiers on January 21, 2020 [RYAD KRAMDI/AFP via Getty Images]

Two Algerian ministries have decided to end their use of the French language in official correspondence in the light of increasing tensions between Algiers and Paris, Anadolu News Agency reports.

On Thursday, the Algerian Ministry of Vocational Training published a circular on behalf of Minister, Yassin Merapi, requesting staff to use the Arabic language in their official correspondences.

“I attach the utmost importance for the strict implementation for this circular,” Merapi added.

Similarly, Youth and Sports Minister, Abdel Razzaq Sabbak, also ordered the use of Arabic in the ministry’s internal correspondences as of November.

READ: France calls on Algeria to respect its sovereignty, following statements by the Algerian ambassador 

With the exception of the Defence Ministry, all Algerian ministries use French in their correspondences and statements, though the country’s Constitution stipulates that Arabic be the first national and official language, followed by Amazigh\Berber.

The two ministries’ decisions were taken in light of the ongoing crisis between Algeria and France, following remarks by French President, Emmanuel Macron, that were viewed by many Algerians as insulting.

Algeria responded by recalling its ambassador to Paris and banned French military aircraft from using Algerian airspace on 3 October.

Last week, French President, Emmanuel Macron, accused Algerian authorities of stoking hatred against France.

The use of French spread in Algeria in the course of 132 years of colonial rule by France between 1830 and 1962.