As you may know the Algerians living in France played an important role during our revolution. The FLN Federation of France not only supported the ALN/FLN inside Algeria but also participated actively to the
The conditions in 1961 were the following:
- The FLN killed 22 policemen in France.
- The Algerian authorities (GPRA) made a new proposal to the French and negotiations in Evian had more chances to succeed.
The first point led some French policemen to commit punitive actions, randomly beating Algerians in France as a revenge for their dead colleagues. These beatings led to more than 54 deaths among the Algerian community.
And the two points combined led De Gaulle and his minister Roger Frey to order new measures against the Algerians in France. These measures were supposed to prevent the FLN from acting freely and killing more policemen. They were also supposed to weaken the FLN during the Evian negotiations.
Maurice Papon, police commander in Paris, was in charge. He was so happy with this order and declared "Pour un coup reçu, nous en porterons dix".
In October 6th, he decided to install a curfew against Algerians making it impossible for them to leave their houses between 8:30pm and 5:30am. He also ordered the Algerians who owned cafes and bars to close them at 7pm.
The FLN Federation of France called the Algerians (men, women and children) on a strike and a peaceful demonstration by night on October 17th.
On this night, 50000 Algerians left their houses and started their march.
Maurice Papon gave the order to arrest all the Algerians so that they don't join in the demonstration and 11000 to 15000 (according to the French police) of our nationals were jailed.
During this night, the French police didn't just arrest the Algerians, it also beat them, and put many of them in bags and threw them in the Seine river. The result of this hateful attitude was the killing of 200 to 400 Algerians.
The French government kept on denying these massacres till the 70s, and it was only in 1999 (when Papon was judged for his collaboration with the Vichy government and the killing of French Jews during WWII) that the French people remembered the atrocity of the events of October, yet putting everything on Papon's back.
Here can be seen a list of some of the Algerians killed on that night