The Federal Republic of Germany is going to pay a one-off compensation of 2,556 euros per person to the any Jewish person that had lived in Algeria during the Second World War. In this period, about 25, 000 persons lived in Algeria.

To benefit from this compensation, you (a Jewish person) will have to prove that you had lived in Algeria between the French-German armistice of 22 June 1940 and Operation Torch (when the Allies disembarked in North Africa) on 8 November 1942. During this period, the French Jews of Algeria were victims of discrimination decreed by the French State (an entity that replaced the French Republic and collaborated with the Nazis).

The French State of Philippe Petain had notably abolished the Decree Crémieux (giving full French citizenship to the Algerian Jews). This was because it considered the Jewish people no different to the indigenous folk; on an equal footing with the Muslims. Furthermore, Jewish soldiers serving in the army of the French State were placed under arrest in an internment camp in Bedeau. As for Jewish children, they were expelled from institutions of public learning, but continued to take lessons in Catholic education institutions.

By doing this, the Federal Republic of Germany which acted as the successor to the Third Reich, acknowledges that the Third Reich is fully responsible for the acts of the puppet government of Philippe Petain.

The Federal Republic of Germany does not consider itself to be responsible for the anti-Semitic acts committed in Algeria by Admiral François Darlan and later by General Henri Giraud (both protected by the United States) from November 1942. Darlan was assassinated by the Gaullist Fernand Bonnier de La Chapelle with the help of the British Secret Services. Giraud found an ally in President Roosevelt through the intermediary of Jean Monnet.

From 1 January 2016, any Jewish person that had lived in Algeria between 22 June 1940 and 8 November 1942 is already the beneficiary of an annual benefit of 3 600 shekels (around 866 euros) if he/she had subsequently acquired Israeli nationality.

Anoosha Boralessa