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Jews in Algeria Pressured by Rebels to Back Fight Against France

February 24, 1960
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Algerian FLN, the rebel organization, has suddenly revived pressure on the 140,000 Jews of Algeria to back “the ideals of independence” from France.

The demand was contained in a communication of the French Federation of the FLN to the Paris press, which called on Algerian Jews “to affirm as Algerians your adhesion to the ideals of independence” in order “to dissipate ambiguities which risk compromising our future relations.”

Several days ago, FLN leader Ferhat Abbas said in a speech that the rebels were willing to “consider the Europeans of Algeria as Algerians.” The communication took a much stronger tone with the warning that Algerian Jews were “an integral part of the Algerian population” and that for them “it is not a question of choosing between France and Algeria but of becoming effective citizens of your real country.”

Most Algerian Jews are French and citizens by virtue of the fact that most of them or their parents acquired French nationality under the terms of the Cremiuex Decree of 1871.

Some years ago pressure on Algerian Jews by the FLN was heavy. The Jewish Community Council was called on to take a pro-FLN stand and there were acts of terrorism aimed specifically at Algerian Jews as such. In recent years, however, such FLN appeals and warnings have been infrequent.

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