ALGIERS – Thursday, 31 August 2023 (APS) – The minister of Foreign Affairs and National Community Abroad, Ahmed Attaf, received Thursday a phone call from his Swiss counterpart, Ignazio Cassis, in which he deplored the “revisionist” reading by the Swiss justice, the bravery of Algeria’s lonely fight against terrorism, the ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.
In response to the comments made by his Swiss counterpart, who expressed Swiss government’s position on the latest developments in the case relating to the legal proceedings against retired Major General Khaled Nezzar, namely the referral of the case by the Swiss public prosecutor to the Federal Criminal Court with indictment, Ahmed Attaf stressed three main points: “the independence of justice does not justify irresponsibility and that a judicial system, whatever it may be, arrogate to itself the absolute right to judge the policies of a sovereign and independent State.”
The second, according to the statement, is “that since the outset of the case, Algeria had the conviction, and this conviction has become even stronger with time, that the justice of Switzerland provided, thoughtlessly, a platform for terrorists, their allies and their supporters to discredit the honorable battle of our country against terrorism, to heap opprobrium on those who faced it and stain the memory of those killed in the struggle against it.
“With the same thoughtlessness,” the statement added, “Swiss justice offers a “revisionist reading of our country’s history during the 1990s. It proceeds with outrageous and unfounded accusations, hazardous and inappropriate comparisons and falsifications so blatant that they discredit themselves.”
Attaf underlined, in the statement, that the international community recognizes Algeria’s heroic and solitary fight against terrorism in the 1990s, and that our country’s role and experience in the field were widely supported and solicited at both regional and international levels.
He stressed that Algeria “is the champion country, within the African Union (AU), in the prevention and the fight against terrorism, that our country, as part of its mandate to the Security Council, is poised to assume the presidency of two subsidiary committees of the council on the theme of terrorism, and that Algeria will soon co-chair, with the United States, a conference on the fight against terrorism in Africa.”
“It seems that the whole world recognizes that Algeria had been fighting against terrorism except Swiss justice.”
On the basis of those data, Attaf deplored “this revisionist reading, by Swiss justice, of Algeria’s courageous and lonely fight against terrorism.”
The Foreign Minister mentioned “the uniqueness of the current situation, as it is permitted for an organisation of former terrorists and their allies to use Swiss justice to sue the Algerian State.”
“Algeria finds it unacceptable that the Swiss justice system arrogates to itself the right to judge the political choices of a sovereign and independent State in terms of national security.”
Attaf concluded that Algeria’s gratitude to Switzerland remains intact in relation to its role in our country’s independence, however, “this case has reached intolerable limits and the Algerian government is determined to draw all the consequences, including those that are far from desirable for the future of Algerian-Swiss relations.”
The minister expressed the wish that “everything be done to avoid that this case leads relations between Algeria and Switzerland to an undesirable and irreparable situation,” concluded the statement of the ministry of Foreign Affairs and National Community Abroad.