Blum-Viollette proposal

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Viollette Maurice

The Blum-Viollette proposal takes its name from Maurice Viollette, who acted as the French premier and governor-general of Algeria, which was the subject of the proposed legislation. The proposal was introduced to the Popular Front government of France in 1936, and aimed to address the issue of longstanding French colonialism in Algeria.

The proposal suggested that a minority of Algerians obtain full French citizenship while still allowing them to be subject to Muslim law on some social issues (such as marriage/divorce, custody, inheritance). It proposed to offer these benefits to the highly educated, as well as to those Algerian men that served in the French military, with the plan to widen the benefits to other groups at a later date.

Perhaps unfortunately, the proposal never made it to the French Chamber of Deputies for a vote because of the massive protest offered by French settlers in Algeria. It was the failure of this and other such proposals that eventually led to the emergence of violent activists like the Algerian National Liberation Front and other militant groups designed to reclaim sovereignty for Algeria by force.