Two ministers and not least in the French government hierarchy will make a visit to Algeria , these days . First the defense , Jean- Yves Le Drian, expected today , Monday and Laurent Fabius , Minister of Foreign Affairs will on 8 and 9 June. If nothing is said about the purpose of these visits , in addition to the reasons usually given for "strengthening cooperation ties " and other platitudes , these visits meet undoubtedly a political and security situation in the African Sahel region which is packed in recent weeks and that is , whatever we can say Algiers becomes unavoidable . The it should be noted , moreover, that these two French visitors were the first Westerners to this rank, to visit to Algeria after the 4th mandate Bouteflika. That is, between Algiers and Paris , the honeymoon continues.
On 17 May, there was only a few days in Paris organized an emergency mini- summit of Heads of State of Nigeria , Chad, Niger, Cameroon and Benin and in the presence of guests States - States, the United Kingdom and the European Union. The purpose of this meeting posted by the French head of state is the coordination of the regional fight against the terrorist organization Boko Haram plaguing Nigeria and whose past crimes consisted in the removal of over 200 Nigerian girls . Why François Hollande has called this meeting on Boko Haram as the country has not traditionally been in the French zone of influence?
Westerners and headed the French head of state came to the conclusion that this terrorist organization not only raged on Nigerian territory , it has placed its tentacles including Mali and affiliated with Al Qaeda , it constitutes a threat and may threaten its interests throughout the region . In the end, the participants adopted a plan for the coordination of information , exchange of information, the "central control means " border surveillance and " a military presence around Lake Chad and response capacity case of danger . " That is to say casually, this mini- summit commitments that go far and will undoubtedly precipitate , among others, the implementation by France of a defense agreement with Mali, countries in which it already operates through force Serval
( 2500 French military ) and additionally provides the establishment of a military base near the Algerian- Malian border .
France, however, learned the hard way that the only agreement with Mali has not solved the problems in this country and the stability she said look in the region is far , far from having been achieved by military interventions , also facilitated by Algeria which granted a right to fly its warplanes from its territory. You need to go further, with other partners and this is what is working today the French defense minister who took his pilgrim's staff , paths across the region after Côte d'Ivoire, Senegal and Mauritania , he travels now Congo and Chad . Algiers is the next step , because Algiers , in the opinion of African leaders themselves, is essential.
France, which according to some observers is reorganizing its military presence in Africa " for a regional design against terrorism " knows more than any other , that without Algiers , this device is doomed to failure . She even knows since the Algerian MFA tries tirelessly to give the country its rightful place because of its geographical and economic dimension ( by the richness of its basement) in the region and in particular because of the experience of its defense services in the fight against terrorism. This last way, which explains the African diplomatic ballet currently facing the country which receives many delegations who come to benefit from the Algerian experience in security .
Paris does not, however desperate to sign a security cooperation agreement with Algeria , as it has also to do with Chad, Niger and Mauritania.
This aspect is likely to be discussed , if not more , during the visit of Le Drian . The question is to know what the balance of power these discussions will take place and if Algeria will assert its weight in these discussions. The answer is of course that may have been to make the Algerian decision-makers the power of Hexagon concessions which the President is , remember, rushed to be the first to congratulate President Bouteflika for his fourth term.
Visit Laurent Fabius stopped for 8 and 9 June , do not she is a logical extension of this concession and a French profits could not be limited to economic gains , huge , certainly, but also geopolitical , if the leaves Algeria to France as it is understood in the region. Because it goes without saying that French effervescence has a much larger problem than just counter-terrorism purposes. France did not , despite the change of regime abandoned its policy of France - Africa.