The Revolutionary Period and Independence
Emerging from more than 132 years of French colonial domination
and nearly eight years of the War of Independence, Algeria was
officially declared independent of France on July 3, 1962, but
recognizes July 5 as its Independence Day. Exhausted from so many
years of warfare and internally divided into fiercely competitive
factions, the military/political leadership of the victorious
FLN quickly deteriorated into incohesive groups vying for control
of the new state.
The three major contenders for political predominance were the
provisional government established by the FLN in 1958, the military
officials, and the wilaya commands (administrative district
councils established by the military in the preindependence period).
The confrontation was characterized by fierce personal and ethnic
loyalties as well as ideology and surfaced even before independence
was officially declared. A May 1962 meeting in Tripoli of FLN
leaders closed with Ahmed Ben Bella assuming control of the party
and what would become the nation of Algeria under a tentative
alliance with Colonel Houari Boumediene.
Data as of December 1993