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Conclusion: A Shifting Policy — Supporting Democratization or Political Stability?

ByCamille Bonora-Waisman

The various French governments' foreign policy towards Algeria has been oscillating because the policy principles behind conciliation or eradication were not what mattered to Paris. The policy of Islamic Salvation Front ('FIS) containment' was backed under Edouard Balladur even after it was believed that the FIS could not take power by warfare. Just like the Pierre Beregovoy government, the Balladur government was also led to oppose conciliation because of the perceived risks that this option involved for France in the area of immigration. The October 1995 shift under the Alain Juppe government was from supporting the conciliation option only halfheartedly to urging the Algerian authorities to democratize their political system. A month prior to the Algerian presidential election, the Juppe government took a firm stand for conciliation.