Meanwhile, the dey of Algiers itself was weak politically, economically, and militarily.
Algeria was then part of the Barbary States, along with today's Tunisia - which depended on the Ottoman Empire then led by Mahmud II - but enjoyed relative independence.
Tensions between the two population groups came to a head in 1954, when the first violent events of what was later called the Algerian War began.
The war concluded in 1962, when Algeria gained complete independence following the March 1962 Evian agreements.
The conflict began in December 1991, when the new and enormously popular Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) party appeared poised to defeat the ruling National Liberation Front (FLN) party in the national parliamentary elections.
The elections were canceled after the first round and the military effectively took control of the government, forcing pro-reform president Chadli Bendjedid from office.
), known as the Emir Abdelkader or Abdelkader El Djezairi, was an Algerian "Sharif" religious and military leader who led a struggle against the French colonial invasion in the mid-19th century.
An Islamic scholar and Sufi who unexpectedly found himself leading a military campaign, he built up a collection of Algerian tribesmen that for many years successfully held out against one of the most advanced armies in Europe.
Like other students, he received a traditional education in theology, jurisprudence and grammar; it was said that he could read and write by the age of five.However, indigenous Muslims remained a majority of the territory's population throughout its history.Gradually, dissatisfaction among the Muslim population with its lack of political and economic status fueled calls for greater political autonomy, and eventually independence, from France.ICRC president Peter Maurer will be paying a four-day official visit to Algeria during the event.Academics and other specialists from Algeria, Morocco, Switzerland and the United Kingdom will be discussing both Emir Abdelkader's contribution to modern humanitarian law and the issues involved in ensuring compliance."In the 19th century, two men – Emir Abdelkader and Henry Dunant, the founder of the international Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement – shared a common humanitarian ideal: every soldier who was no longer able to fight, whether through injury or because he had been taken prisoner, should be spared, cared for and protected, without discrimination," explained Bruce Biber, who heads the ICRC's Algiers delegation.