Algeria, a gateway between Africa and Europe, has been wracked by violence for the past half century.
In the year There are conflicting accounts of the death toll in the war of independence with France in the 1950s and early 60s. French historians estimate that up to 400,000 Algerians were killed, while the Algerian government puts the death toll at over a million.
In the year In 1992, the country was plunged into internal strife after the elections, which the Islamists were guaranteed to win, were annulled. Low-level Islamist insurgency still plagues Algeria.
The Sahara desert covers more than four-fifths of the land. Algeria is the continent’s largest country and the 10th largest in the world.
In the year Oil and gas reserves were discovered there in the 1950s, but most Algerians live on the northern coast.
Capital City: Algiers
Location: 2,381,741 square km
Population: 29.3 million
Languages: Arabic, Tamazight, French plus
life expectancy: 75 years (men) 78 years (women)
President: Abdelmadjid Teboun
In the year Abdelmadjid Teboui, who won the presidential election in December 2019, was ousted by popular protests in April, linked to the era of Abdelaziz Bouteflika.
Opposition parties protested the election and called for a purge of the military-dominated elite and an ongoing anti-corruption campaign.
Mr Tebune has promised the necessary reforms, but the former civil servant faces a tough challenge in winning public trust.
Algeria has a lively private press, but the state broadcasting corporation refrains from criticism of the government.
A recent law allows several private television stations to operate from Algerian soil, but none are opposition.
Some key dates in Algerian history:
c. 600 BC – The Carthaginians expand their settlements along the coast of North Africa.
4th century BC – The Berbers form a large part of the Carthaginian army.
241-238 BC – Revolt of the Mercenaries: Berber soldiers revolted without pay following Carthage’s defeat by Rome in the First Punic War.
146 BC – Carthage is destroyed by Roman forces under Scipio Africanus.
2nd century BC – Emergence of the Berber kingdoms of Numidia and Mauretania.
24 AD – Berber kingdoms became part of the Roman Empire.
429 – Germanic Vandals invade North Africa and establish a kingdom based on Carthage.
477-578 – Rise of the Mauro-Roman Empire, an independent Christian Berber kingdom centered on Altava.
533-34 – Byzantine forces under Belisarius drive out the Vandals as part of Emperor Justinian’s reconquest of the Western Roman Empire.
578-708 – The Kingdom of Altava is the successor state of the former Berber Kingdom. It flourished until the invasion of the area by the Umayyad Caliphs in the seventh and eighth centuries.
972-1148 – Zirids: A Berber dynasty from present-day Algeria that ruled the central Maghreb from 972 to 1014 and the eastern Maghreb from 972 to 1148.
1050-1147 – Almoravids: A Berber Muslim dynasty centered on present-day Morocco that established an empire in the 11th century in the western Maghreb (North Africa) and Al-Andalus (Southern Spain) beginning in the 1050s and lasting until the fall of the Almohads. 1147.
1121-1269 AD – Almohads: A Berber Muslim empire of North Africa that controlled most of the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa at its height.
1235-1557 – Xianids: A Berber dynasty centered on the city of Tlemcen in northwestern Algeria.
1509 – The Spanish conquer Oran.
1512 – Turkish privateer brothers Oruk and Hayredin – both known to Europeans in their day as Barbarossa or “Red Beard” – operate successfully out of Tunisia.
1519 – After the Spanish attempt to take Algiers, a meeting of Algerian notables asked the Ottoman Sultan Selim to make Algiers part of the Ottoman Empire. Hayredin Barbarossa was called Beilerbey of Algiers or Emir of the Emirs. The province would be key to the Turks, who saw it as the leading Ottoman power in the western Mediterranean.
1681-88 – Franco-Algerian War: Part of France’s wider campaign against the Barbary pirates – mainly Muslim pirates and individuals operating to capture slaves from North Africa for the Ottoman slave trade. In addition to capturing merchant ships, they raided coastal towns and villages in Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal; But they also invaded the British Isles, the Netherlands, and Iceland.
1783-1784 – Following an attack on Spanish merchant ships, the Spanish Navy and its allies bombed Algiers, destroying many of its fortifications.
In 1815 – Second Barbary War: Between the United States and the Barbary Coast States of Tripoli, Tunis, and Algiers.
In 1816 – Britain and the Netherlands bombed Algiers to force the local ruler to stop enslaving Europeans. However, this would not be completely over until the French conquered Algeria.
In 1830 – French conquest of Algeria. France invaded and quickly took Algiers and other coastal communities. Additional military forces arrived in the following years to quell internal resistance and encourage colonists to settle and settle.
In 1848 – Algeria becomes a department of France, an integral part of France itself. It was a destination for hundreds of thousands of European colonists. Many Europeans settled in Oran and Algiers, and in both cities they formed the majority of the population in the early 20th century – about one-fifth of Algeria’s total population.
From 1939-1945 -During World War II, the collapse of France and the Anglo-American invasion of North Africa fueled hopes for independence.
In 1945 – Independence marches in Setif. Thousands of Algerians were killed in the ensuing unrest.
1954-1962 – Algerian War of Independence. A major armed conflict broke out between France and the Algerian National Liberation Front, or FLN, when Algeria won its independence from France. It is a complex conflict characterized by guerrilla warfare and war crimes. It will be a civil war between different communities and societies. The total number of deaths varies from 400,000 to 1.5 million. Up to a million European colonists left Algeria.
In 1962 – Algeria became independent.
In 1976 – Algerian and Moroccan armies clash in Western Sahara.
In 1989 – A new constitution will eliminate one-party government and transition the country from socialism to Western capitalism.
1991-2002 – Algerian Civil War: In two rounds of legislative elections in 1991, the first Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) took control and the authorities canceled the elections, fearing the election of the Islamic State. They ban the FIS, prompting a civil war between the Algerian armed forces and various Islamist rebel groups. Islamic militants carry out massacres against civilians. More than 100,000 people are said to have died.
In 1999 – Abdelaziz Bouteflika became president and introduced a policy of national reconciliation.
2007 – An Islamic insurgent campaign in the Maghreb and Sahel by al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, or AQIM, to overthrow the Algerian government and establish an Islamic state.
2019 – President Bouteflika announced that he would resign following public protests in the streets.