Centrist French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron boosted his international stature with a visit to Algeria on Monday in a bid to woo French voters living in the former French colony.
Macron, a 39-year-old former investment banker and former French Finance minister, was received by Algerian Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal and Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra after arriving in the capital, Algiers.
He declared bilateral relations between the two countries as issues of “of fundamental importance.”
“The Libyan issue and the Malian issue are two subjects at the heart of regional security, African security, and which obviously are very structuring for our foreign policy and the security policy that I want to implement,” said Macron.
Macron met nearly 300 members of the French community in Algiers, as he defended his campaign policies.
Macron is among the top candidates in France’s presidential election, alongside 48-year-old Marine Le Pen, the far-right National Front’s anti-immigration leader.