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PST statement on hostage taking

Wednesday 23 January 2013, by PST - Socialist Workers Party of Algeria

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This further statement [1] was issued by the National Secretariat of the PST (Parti socialiste des travailleurs, French section of the Fourth International) on 20
January 2013.

Five days after the invasion of Mali by French colonialist troops on 10 January 2013 with the unnatural, clandestine and inadmissible support of Algeria, the taking of hostages on the Tigantourine gas field at In Amenas, by “around thirty armed Islamists led by a one-eyed man” and which is attributed to yet another grouping, “Those who have signed in blood!”, sheds a little more light on French imperialist goals in the region and the new relationship of forces being imposed on the peoples.

For the PST, beyond the condemnation of this criminal operation, it is obvious that it benefits French imperialism. The operation at In Amenas legitimates its military intervention in Mali, exerting a greater pressure on Algeria to get more involved in its military, and above all financial plans, and crystallises an international consensus on the “benefits” of this French colonial reconquest effort.

The episode at In Amenas is indissociable from the large scale colonialist manoeuvres inaugurated by NATO and France in Libya in 2011 with massive destruction. The Serval operation in Mali strengthens the Epervier system established by France in 1986 in Chad, relying on Sabre operational helicopters stationed in Burkina Faso and Mauritania. In other words the whole Sahel region is coming under the boot of “Africa’s gendarme”, France.

Although the “Islamist threat” in Mali is indeed real and cruel, it originates above all from the social and economic impasse of the neoliberal policies imposed by France and imperialism which mortgage development and condemn the peoples in Africa and the world to poverty and domination.

For the PST, beyond the technical-military considerations on the correctness or otherwise of the ANP’s military intervention to free the hostages at In Amenas, the intolerable interference and injunctions of the imperialist powers in London, Tokyo or Washington which we have witnessed reveal the level of selling out of our national sovereignty much as our wealth has been sold off and our economy destroyed in the name of neoliberalism.

No to the colonial war in Mali and its consequences in Algeria!
French troops out of Mali!

No to the opening of Algerian air space to French bombers!

For a political solution guaranteeing the democratic and development rights of all components of the Malian people!


20 January 2013