Krim, Belkacem

   He was one of the historic leaders of the Algerian revolution. He was born in the village of Aït Yahia Ou Moussa in the region of Draâ al Mizan, Greater Kabylia. He received his elementary school certificate at the Sarrouy school in Algiers. Afterward, he worked as an employee in the Mirabeaud mixed commune (commune mixte). In 1945, he joined the Parti du Peuple Algérien (PPA) as well as the Organisation spéciale (OS). From 1946 on, especially following the accusation of assassinating a forest ranger, Krim was always on the run from French authorities to the point that he became known as the "lion du Djebel," or "the mountain lion."
   In 1947 and 1950, he was twice condemned to death in absentia. Although he was leading a clandestine way of life, in 1954 he became the sixth internal leader of the Comité Révolutionnaire pour l'Unité et l'Action (CRUA) of the Front de Libération Nationale (FLN). He was in charge of the Kabylia region. After the 1956 Soummam Valley Congress, he reluctantly opposed his fellow Kabyle, Abbane Ramdane, and became a member of the Comité de Coordination et d'Exécution (CCE) of the FLN. After the Battle of Algiers (1956-1957), he left Algeria to join the external delegation of the FLN. In 1958, he became vice president of the Gouvernement Provisoire de la République Algérienne (GPRA). During the GPRA years, he served as war minister, vice president of the Council of Ministers (1958), foreign minister (1960), and minister of the interior (1961). He chaired the FLN negotiating team, which signed the Evian Accords recognizing Algeria's independence, and was the chief opponent of Ahmed Ben Bella's government after independence in 1962. From 1963 to 1965, he withdrew from politics. In 1965, he was accused of plotting against Houari Boumédiènne and was again condemned to death in absentia, this time ironically by postindependence Algerian courts.
   In 1969, he organized the Mouvement de Renouveau Algérien (MRA). He later took refuge in Germany, where he was assassinated on 18 October 1970 in Frankfurt, probably by Algerian security operatives. In 1984, Krim's legacy and contributions to the Algerian Revolution were reassessed, and his name was rehabilitated. As a result, he was reburied in the Carré des Martyrs cemetery in Algiers. In 1999, his home in the Aït Yahia Ou Moussa village was converted into a museum to celebrate his life and times.
   See also Aït Ahmed, Hocine.

Historical Dictionary of the Berbers (Imazighen) . . 2014.

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